The 16th tee for this week’s £5.7 million Turkish Airlines Open literally is a ‘home of golf’.
Players will hit their drives at the hole on the Regnum Carya course, a new venue for the event, from the roof of a villa.
The holiday home was built where the original back tee used to be and by constructing a tee on the roof of it, 34 yards have been added to the hole, which now measures 463 yards.
“Obviously it’s the first time Regnum Carya Golf & Resort Spa have hosted a European Tour event and we took a look at the course and how we might set it up,” said tournament director Miguel Vidaor.
“The original 16th hole was altered during the construction of the villas and the new tee on the roof is pretty much where the old tee used to be.”
Players will climb 24 stairs to the top of the single-storey building before hitting off in the first of the European Tour’s Final Series events and the unusual tee was given the thumbs up by one of the first players to play from it in a practice round.
“I liked it,” admitted Padraig Harrington, winner of the recent Portugal Masters. “It’s a bit of fun. It’s interesting.
“I like anything that’s a little bit different and it comes at a good time in the round. If it was the 18th, you might go, ‘oh, that’s a bit of a distraction at that stage’. But the 16th, that’s fine.”
Two of the four Scots in the 78-man field - Richie Ramsay and Paul Lawrie - will play the first round together tomorrow in the company of Englishman Chris Paisley.
Marc Warren is out with another Englishman, Oli Fisher and Mikko Korhonen, the Finn who catapulted himself up the Race to Dubai with a strong finish behind Harrington in Portugal.
David Drysdale starts out with two of the European Tour’s young guns, German Max Kieffer and Italian Renato Paratore
Carly Booth is excited about the Ladies Europeab Tour breaking new ground today with the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Open at Saadiyat Beach in Abu Dhabi.
The event in the UAE capital is the first of three LET tournaments in the Middle East as the circuit enters the final straight in 2016.
The Qatar Ladies Open takes place in Doha later in the month followed by the traditional season-ending event, the Omega Dubai Ladies Masters.
“It’s always nice to be back here because I’ve spent a lot of time in the UAE over the last few years and it’s great to have a tournament in Abu Dhabi and be here at Saadiyat Beach Golf Club,” said Booth, one of six Scots in this week’s field.
“It’s nice to have a few events in this area, with Dubai and Doha coming up. Golf has grown so much here and the men have three or four events, so it’s nice to finally have the women out here as well.
“There are some amazing golf courses and I think that people need to see it more. It’s a great place for the Ladies European Tour to come and play.”
The two-time LET winner is joined in the field by Pamela Pretswell, Gemma Dryburgh, Kylie Walker, Sally Watson and Vikki Laing, as well as Edinburgh-based American Beth Allen.
David Law, who won the only event he played in, finished top Scot in this season’s MENA Tour Order of Merit after a poor final round by Paul Doherty in the Tour Championship in Oman.
After opening with rounds of 68 and 71, Doherty closed with a 75 at Muscat Hills for 214, two-under-par, to finish joint-25th in an event won by South African Tyler Hogarty as he signed off with a 67 for 204.
Clarke Lutton, the only other Scot in the field for the season-ending event, finished in a share of 43 on 220 after a last-day 73 while Rayham Thomas, the Indian player to won the Scottish Boys’ Stroke-Play Championship at Lanark this year, ended up alongside Doherty after a closing 74.
Law, who triumped in the Sotogrande Masters at La Reserve in Spain in April, claimed 24th spot - three better than Doherty - in the final Order of Merit, which was won by Englishman Craig Hinton from three of his compatriots, Luke Joy, Zane Scotland and Andrew Marshall.
Duncan Stewart finished 48th, Danny Kay 53rd and Lutton 56th.