By Dalia Darweesh
(Photos: Chris Villegas)
Sponsored by the Saudi Aramco president & CEO and organized by Saudi Aramco Golf Association (SAGA), the CEO Cup Golf Tournament began back in the 1970s, and it has been held annually continuing the tradition ever since. Aramco has been a leader in golf through hosting and participating in various golf tournaments at company residential communities and other golf facilities throughout the Kingdom.
Ahmed A. Al-Subaey, vice president of Marketing, Sales and Supply Planning, also serves as the chair of SAGA, said, “The annual CEO Cup is a sporting tradition like no other as this is a rare sporting event sponsored by a CEO of a major company in Saudi Arabia.
“In line with Vision 2030, Aramco is continuing to play its part in helping golf to grow among all demographics, while leading environment stewardship and business network opportunities,” said Al-Subaey.
Nabil A. Al Nuaim, vice president of Corporate Affairs, who participated in the CEO Cup Golf Tournament commented on the golf industry, stated, “This is a great time that provides multiple opportunities for huge enterprises from all over the world to join, and be a part of golf in the Kingdom, especially with the recent shift. The Kingdom is striving to expand to attract more investors. I believe that this year, golf has truly accelerated and became more popular, especially during the pandemic. It is the perfect activity and place to relive stress while enjoying the scenery. With vast spaces that promote social distancing, it has been the perfect sport for many.”
(Photos: Chris Villegas)
On The Tournament
The tournament is organized and managed by SAGA in Dhahran, and in collaboration with the Rolling Hills Golf Club (RHGC).
Held annually, the tournament is open to all Aramco golfers. Historically a gala dinner and award ceremony presentation attended by the CEO followed the event. This year, due to COVID-19 precautionary measures, the award ceremony has been postponed to a later date.
During the two-day event this year, the golf course’s difficulty and high winds were a challenging factor on both days of the tournament, said Minhaj U. Khan, senior consultant at Corporate Affairs and vice chair, SAGA. Over 278 golfers, inclusive of members of corporate management, participated in this year’s event making it the most successful in its history, said Khan.
Edward R. Devlin, HR advisor, and president of the RHGC explained how the success of such a tournament required a huge team effort from the CEO’s office, Community Services, Catering, and Gardening Services. “We are very lucky and fortunate to have such support. The dedication and enthusiasm from everyone who has been involved, including volunteers, was outstanding,” said Devlin.
When asked about his round, Abdullatif A. Omair, general supervisor at the Reservoir Description and Simulation Department, said, “I birdied Hole 6, while boggying another. It was a nice challenge, especially with such a wind howling — but that’s the beauty of golf, it’s a humbling game.”
Membership of the RHGC keeps growing, and it is the largest self-directed group (SDG) of all SDGs in the Dhahran Aramco residential community. Within the last four years, women membership has increased from 12 to 60, and in total, there are 771 members today. Golf is a great sport, and an activity that promotes well-being.
— The Arabian Sun: March 10, 2021 | Vol. LXXVI, No. 10