‘This is for you, Dad’: Joe Heraty completes ‘tough week’ with first Mena Tour title

Joe Heraty capped an emotional week by winning the inaugural Sahara Kuwait Championship for his first Mena Golf Tour title.

A final round five-under par 65 ensured Joe Heraty won the Sahara Kuwait Championship by two shots. Courtesy Mena Golf Tour
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Joe Heraty capped an emotional week by winning the inaugural Sahara Kuwait Championship for his first Mena Golf Tour title.

Heraty, 25, shot a bogey-free five-under par 65 in the final round at the Sahara Golf and Country Club in Kuwait City for a 13-under par total to finish two shots clear of fellow Englishman Daniel Owen.

Heraty’s victory is even more impressive given the news that his father was diagnosed with a brain tumour last week.

“This is for you, Dad,” Heraty said after receiving the winner’s trophy and a cheque for $9,000 (Dh33,000).

“It feels just unbelievable at the moment to what I have achieved. It was a tough week, but I managed to keep my emotions in check. Made lots of birdies and didn’t hit any disastrous shots.”

• Round 1: Kieswetter impresses on debut, Herati takes lead

• Round 2: Stuart Archibald surges into lead

Runner-up Owen surged up the leaderboard on the final day thanks to a flawless six-under 64 that included two birdies on the front nine and four on the back nine.

However, it was Chile’s Matias Calderon who was the round’s biggest mover after he shot a course record-equalling 62, which was set by Heraty on Monday, to earn a tie for third and a share of the leading amateur award with Brazil’s Tiago Lobo. England’s Jordan Garnish was also tied third.

“It was a pleasure to play on this course which was set up nicely,” Lobo, 18, said. “I drove the ball well and created lots of birdie opportunities with my wedges.

“I may not have struck the ball that well in the final round, but managed to hole more putts which kept the round going.”

Stuart Archibald, the overnight leader, finished in a tie for sixth after a final round 71.

Morocco’s Ahmed Marjan won the Mena Division for professionals on five under after carding a final round 67, beating his nearest challenger Peter Badawy of Lebanon by six shots while Saudi Arabia’s Khaled Attieh took the region’s leading amateur honours, one clear of his fellow countryman Othman Al Mulla.

“It was really fun playing in Kuwait. Finishing in red figures has certainly added to my confidence. I drove the ball well all week and holed many clutch putts,” Marjan said.

“I like the design of the course. There are good of scoring opportunities out there if you can keep the ball in play.”

Elsewhere, former England cricketer Craig Kieswetter closed with a 73 despite dropping six shots, including four on the 18th, to finish in a tie for 33rd on level par.

The Mena Tour next travels to Oman for the Ghala Open to be held in Muscat from October 24 to 26. The event will be followed by the season-ending Tour Championship at the Muscat Hills Golf and Country Club a week later.

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