Paul McGinley: 'Celebs key to golf's growth'

Getty Images 488478424
Paul McGinley says events such as the Abu Dhabi Invitational are vital to helping golf reach wider audiences and, in turn, get more people involved in the sport.

The Abu Dhabi Invitational takes place on the award-winning Yas Links this weekend and features a professional golfers’ team against a celebrity team – of which McGinley is captain of the professionals and legendary goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel (below) the celebrities.

The event raises vital funds for charities – including the 2014 Ryder Cup captain’s own McGinley Foundation – with the likes of singer Ronan Keating, rower Sir Matthew Pinsent, rugby World Cup winner Mike Tindall, ex-footballers Ruud Gullit, Dwight Yorke, Ronald De Boer and Roberto Di Matteo and cricket heroes James Anderson (below Schmeichel), Brian Lara and Jacques Kallis among the names teeing it up.

Read more -> Paul McGinley slams DJ US Open farce

Peter Schmeichel

And McGinley believes getting sporting royalty and celebrities together for pro-am tournaments such as this and getting them to play and share their experiences on social media can only help widen golf’s appeal.

“One of the things I’ve learned over the past year being on the board of the European Tour through my involvement with Sky Sports is how people are consuming sport,” he told bunkered.co.uk.

Sports stars and celebrities have a huge following outwith traditional golf fans

- Paul McGinley

“It’s not just sitting down and watching it for a two or three-hour period now.

“Social media has become stronger and stronger and if you look at what has happened on the European Tour, we’ve invested a lot of money in that department and created some really good, innovative content that has been getting a lot of traction.

James Anderson1

“These other sports stars and celebrities have a huge following outwith your traditional golf fans, so if they’re sharing their golf experiences with their thousands of followers, the sport is reaching out to more people and that can only be seen as a good thing.”

For the Abu Dhabi Invitational, each professional and each celebrity will be paired with a VIP guest and the teams will compete against each other in a Ryder Cup fourball format.

Paul McGinley will be starring at The Abu Dhabi Invitational 2017 #Unforgettable.

Share this Article

share-logo
twitter-logo facebook-logo

Latest Videos See all videos right arrow

play button
THE MOST DIFFICULT LIES IN GOLF | GOLF EXPLAINED
Golf Lessons
play button
AM I A GOOD ENOUGH GOLFER TO USE A SET OF BLADES???
blades
play button
PICKING OUR FAVOURITE UTILITY IRON - Callaway X Forged UT vs TaylorMade SIM UDI vs Titleist U•500
Utility Irons
play button
HOW TO GAIN 20 YARDS OFF THE TEE | GOLF EXPLAINED
Golf Lessons
See all videos right arrow

Golf News

European Tour and PGA Tour announce new "strategic alliance"
PING Europe is under new leadership
Historic Scots golf club suffers ‘heartbreaking’ vandalism
Gordon Sherry shares pro regrets (and has advice for today's young players)
"It's infuriating!" - Scottish golf course hit by vandals

Other Top Stories

Tiger Woods: Inside his $41million Florida mansion
The very best pubs in St Andrews
The Scottish Golf Course Emoji Quiz!
24 lies every bad golfer tells
Doug Sanders: The extraordinary life of golf's original playboy

Quick Fault 'n' Fixes See all videos right arrow

play button
Shifting your weight at impact for more power
Watch
play button
A simple tip to help fight your slice
Watch
play button
A simple drill to increase your shoulder turn
Callaway
play button
More shoulder turn means more power
Watch
See all videos right arrow