Most of the world was caught by surprise witnessing the end of Hosni Mubarak’s reign in Egypt. For over 30 years, Hosni Mubarak has been the only president of Egypt. The most surprising thing is the buildup to his resignation. It was only after the people of Egypt took to the streets and protested for more than two weeks, that Mubarak submitted to the pressure and finally left with his tail between his legs (and a few billion in the bank…).

The Egypt uprising was the first of several uprisings all over the Arab World. With people looking to put an end to autocratic rule, there is a chance that many leaders of Arab countries will have to leave like Mubarak. This event will go down in history and will be remembered for a long time. Plus, it will have a profound effect in many arenas: oil, finance and sports to name a few.

Though the Arab World may not be known for its players, some of the best sporting facilities are located in these countries. The Arab Uprisings 2010-11 will have a profound impact on the sports of these countries. Golf tourism and events in the Middle East and other Arab countries like Egypt, are certain to be affected.

Golf in Egypt has been a major attraction for tourists for many years. In fact, many golf lovers fly down to Egypt for a golfing holiday. Egypt has many world-class golf courses and clubs that have earned the appreciation of golfers from all over the world. Many professional golfers make time in their schedules just to go and play a round of golf in Egypt.

The ratings of the golf courses in Sharm el Sheikh in Egypt will go down because of the recent uprising and transfer of power. Many golf courses in the region are expensive because of the huge investment made to develop them and the lack of natural water resources.

The Great Pyramids of Giza

The safety and security issues for anyone coming to Egypt, or to any other country where there is a similar uprising, will be immense. This will discourage people from visiting to these countries and will have a direct effect on the golfing scene in the region.
During this tumultuous time, it is highly unlikely that anyone in Egypt would be going to play a round of golf. In fact, it is quite possible that golf in Egypt may remain idle for a long time until the country settles down again.

Other African nations that are going through a quantum shift are Tunisia, Morocco, Libya, and Bahrain. Tunisia was the place where the uprisings started and it has had a deep impact on the country as well. The sporting activities, such as football, which is very popular in Tunisia, are likely to be suspended for a time. The golfing scene throughout the Middle East will be influenced by what has happened. Dubai golf may also be affected because of the uprisings.
The recent cloud of doubt over the Bahrain Grand Prix, the first race of this year’s Formula 1 season does not bode well.

Bahrain has become a vulnerable area for sports and any events in the region will be under a cloud because of the current situation. The golfing scene is already being be affected negatively. Even though Dubai has been less affected than the other places, Europeans and Americans are likely to put off their next visit for the foreseeable future at least.

And we haven’t seen anything written about the choice of Qatar for the 2022 football World Cup. Even though it’s a decade away, the current conditions in the country are not conducive to holding the Cup there. In fact, the local league could be under threat of being called off temporarily, which put could be a serious setback to Qatar as a World Cup host.

Al Sadd Club Stadium Qatar

The whole Arab world, from the Middle East to Africa, has been affected by the uprisings against the political leadership of many countries. This will have a profound and long-lasting impact on the sporting activities, including golf. It is a serious issue that could take years to resolve.

Images by Tommy Wong,Yusuke Kawasaki, Tsutomu Takasu
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