Earth by Greg Norman
The Earth course will be a fitting home for the Dubai World Championship. A sharply-defined, sculptured course inspired by the great parklands of Europe and North America, Earth paints a magnificent pastiche of rolling terrain and rushing water. Indigenous flora and fauna underpin the natural environmental balance, while lush, gardenlike vegetation and traditional, swift-flowing water features create an oasis of natural beauty. Grass covers not just the playing surfaces, but the peripheral landscaping as well, giving Earth a verdant quality unique in the Middle East.
Rarely has a course received more attention from its creators, improving through frequent visits from the developers of Greg Norman Golf Course Design, The European Tour, Jumeirah Golf Estates and Greg Norman himself. Likewise, most courses do not benefit from this level of financial investment — more than twice the average expenditure per hole as compared to other premier courses. Few courses have been under so much scrutiny, with the eyes of the golf world trained upon it as it prepares for its maiden round in the Dubai World Championship.
And never before has a course been closed to the public for so long, awaiting its debut. Fully grassed since April 2008, Jumeirah Golf Estates has given Earth an unprecedented two full seasons to mature before the Dubai World Championship begins, 19 months later. Until then, intensive maintenance will ensure that the links of Earth have the look and feel of an established course but with conditions more pristine than most professional players will have experienced in their careers.