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Former Liverpool star Didi Hamann features as 2018 DHL Swing Against Cancer Series tees off

Didi Hamann played and hosted a Q&A for charity at the 2018 DHL Swing Against Cancer Series

Sport360 staff 2018/05/07

The 2018 DHL Swing Against Cancer Series started with a bang as over 170 golfers and guests joined former Liverpool footballer Didi Hamann at Jumeirah Golf Estates for the DHL Open.

The event was held to raise more than US$20,000 for Friends of Cancer Patients and will go directly to the treatment of three-year old Mohamed Sameer Abdullah, recently diagnosed with leukemia.

“I wanted to get involved in this fantastic series as it helps such a great cause,” said Hamann, who was part of the Liverpool team that clinched the Champions League in dramatic fashion in 2005, coming back from 3-0 down against AC Milan to win on penalties in 2005 – with the German scoring the first spot kick in the shootout.

“Hopefully the money we have raised today can go towards Mohamed’s treatment and cures him so he can lead a normal childhood.

“I think it’s our responsibility to give back to the community and society. Some people are not as fortunate as myself so it’s great to get involved with such a great cause and help out this little boy.”

The afternoon golf event saw Maruf Khan come out on top in the amateur division scoring an impressive 44 stableford points with Hisham Shammas finishing second, also with 44 points but missing out on first place on a back nine countback.

Completing the podium places in third place with 43 points was Paul Grayson and all three will now qualify for the DHL Swing Against Cancer Golf Series Grand Final, the Mike Clark Golf Day, which takes place back on the Earth course at Jumeirah Golf Estates on November 1, where a place in the Pro-Am at the star-studded DP World Tour Championship will be up for grabs.

In the pro division, Ricki Neil-Jones finished top of the pile after a classy round of 78 to win a place in the grand final where he will compete for a three-night golf break at Shangri-La’s Hambantota Golf Resort & Spa in Sri Lanka.

For 16 handicapper Hamann however, it was all about having fun with his teammates from title sponsors DHL.

Didi Hamann (r) pictured with his DHL team-mates.

“My golf isn’t as good as it should be but then again I’m not a very patient man,” he laughed.

“You need to have patience and dedication on the range to try and improve your game. I enjoy the social aspect of being out on the course with the lads and having a laugh. If I play well that’s a bonus.”

The DHL Swing Against Cancer Golf Series, organised by Worldwide Golf and Sixteen10, launched last year and has captured the imagination of the UAE’s golf and business communities as well as gaining support from a string celebrities from the worlds of sport and entertainment including Harry Redknapp, Mike Tindall, Michael Campbell, Teddy Sheringham, Gary McAllister and Brian McFadden.

A total of US$100,000 was raised in 2017 and the 2018 series looks set to raise the bar yet further with an international event for the first time at Brocket Hall Golf Club in London on June 29.

It returns to the UAE for the DSA Open at Emirates Golf Club on September 13 and the much-loved Mike Clark Golf Day on November 1.

Having supported the series since it launched, leading logistics company DHL has this year thrown even more weight behind it by becoming title sponsor and country manager Geoff Walsh revealed the motivation behind the company’s involvement.

“It was a no-brainer for us to get involved as title sponsor. We have a corporate social responsibility and want to give back to the community,” he said.

“We want to raise as much money as possible to give towards Mohamed’s treatment. We can do something very special here in the UAE and it’s also great we are going to have an event in the UK for the first time.

“It’s been great playing with Didi as we are both excellent players. We have had great fun playing with him and he’s been really good company. It’s great that he has come out here to help raise some vital funds.”

Worldwide Golf’s Richard Bevan added: “It’s fantastic to see such an amazing turnout– the series has really taken on a momentum of its own and for so many people to get behind what we’re trying to do is truly heart-warming.

“Most people have been affected by cancer in some way and it is incumbent on all of us to do anything we can do to try and fight back.”

Following play there was a glitzy gala dinner where items were snapped up in a charity auction before Hamann entertained guests with a live Q&A.

For more information on any DHL Swing Against Cancer Golf Series event, or to find out how you can get involved, email info@swingagainstcancer.com or visit www.swingagainstcancer.com.

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