Stephen Gallacher suffers double disappointment in Ras Al Khaimah due to back injury

Stephen Gallacher’s frustrating start to his 26th season on the DP World Tour has continued due to an ongoing back injury.

The problem has forced him to withdraw from this week’s Ras Al Khaimah Classic, having already had to sit out the first leg of a double-header at Al Hamra Golf Club last week.

The four-time tour winner suffered the injury as he was warming up for his opening round of the Ras Al Khaimah Championship last Thursday.

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He stayed on in the UAE in the hope it would clear up, but, after pulling out of a scheduled appearance alongside Bob MacIntyre in the Hero Challenge on Tuesday, he’s been forced to withdraw once more.

Stephen Gallacher in action during the recent Dubai Desert Classic at Emirates Golf Club. Picture: Andrew Redington/Getty Images.

Gallacher, who started the new campaign by missing the cut in both Abu Dhabi and Dubai, needs a good season to hang on to his card due to his exemption from winning the Hero Indian Open in 2019 running out at the end of the year.

After a number of postponements, the Lothians man had been due to finally defend that Indian Open title next week, but the event is off again because of ongoing Covid restrictions.

It means that, after the current Middle East Swing, the DP World Tour isn’t scheduled to resume until the Kenya Open early next month.

Meanwhile, victory in the Hero Challenge went to English duo Daniel Gavins and Callum Shinkwin as they teamed up to card eight birdies in a nine-hole Texas Scramble event for a winning eight-under total of 28.

“It was great fun today,” said Shinkwin, who lost to Spaniard Rafa Cabrera-Bello in a play-off in the 2017 Scottish Open at Dundonald Links, of the innovative team event, which was broadcast on television, as well as on YouTube and social media

Second place was shared by nine teams on six-under, including a pairing of winning 2018 Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjørn and James Morrison.

Scottish duo Richie Ramsay and Grant Forrest finished in a tie for 11th on five-under, having opened with four straight birdies but then having to wait until the par-5 18th to add to their haul.

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