Two golf tournaments will take place this weekend, each on a desert golf course bordered by date groves and landscaped with exotic gardens.
That the two oasis courses are located on opposite ends of the earth isn't obvious from photos, but one will take place in Abu Dhabi and the other in Palm Springs so geographically, they couldn't be much further apart.
The fortunes of the two tournaments are setting up to be quite disparate as well, and the situation has been discussed, dissected and mused about quite a bit... with some suggesting that PGA players should not be allowed to use "conflicting event releases" that allow PGA players to play overseas. At least not on weeks like this one.
In its fifth year, The Abu Dubai Championship has it's strongest field ever, with 8 of the world's top 15... while the top player in Palm Springs for The Bob Hope Classic's 50th Anniversary is Canada's Mike Weir ranked 37th. Even Mother Nature seems to be taking sides; The PGA Tour is bracing for predicted periods of wind-swept, wintery rain and looking at coningency plans in California while endless clear sunny skies are predicted at Abu Dhabi Golf Club.
In the meantime, I'll keep you posted on both tournaments over the coming days, because both are interesting events and in golf, one never really knows who's going to do what, and in this case, where.