Captain 2021, Dr Abdulaziz Yousif, joined the Royal Golf Club (former Riffa Golf Club) when it was established in 2000, but got the golfing bug in Scotland back in 1974 when he was first introduced to the game by his late father-in-law. He recalls the first time he held a golf club, a hickory shaft club, and after a dozen unsuccessful attempts to hit the ball, he finally caught it and launched the ball into the air - from that moment on he was hooked.
Despite his work as Head of Microbiology in Salmaniya Medical Centre, teaching at Arabian Gulf University plus running a private laboratory, he still found time for the game. In the Bahraini golfing community, he is known as a “Swing Fixer”.
Since Dubai became the golfers Mecca in the Middle East, the Doc has taken part in many Pro Ams, playing with Sir Nick Faldo, Ernie Els, Miguel Jimenez, Cabrera Bello and many other golfing stars. His highlight was receiving an invitation to US Masters in 2006 from Mark O’Meara.
Ladies Captain 2021/2022
Anne is from the south east of the Netherlands. She has a Master’s degree in law from the University of Nijmegen where she met her husband Robert. They left the Netherlands for Robert‘s work in 1997 and moved to Bahrain with two small children. Anne and Robert are proud to be one of the first founding Members of the then Riffa Golf Club.
In 2000 the Timmers family moved to Luxemburg, where their youngest was born. After a few years in Europe it was then back to the Middle East (Dubai) where they became Members at Troon Montgomerie Golf Club for 4 years. Anne had great experiences as a marshal at the Dubai Desert Classic where she saw Tiger Woods play (and Roger Federer watching him!)
Having picked up golf in her thirties but never really taking it seriously, Anne’s attitude towards competitions really changed when she won the Race to Augusta at the Royal Golf Club in 2021. With a lot of practice and help from the on-site PGA Golf Professionals, she has finally managed to bring her handicap down!
Men's Vice Captain 2021/2022
Ronan grew up in Belfast and has been in Bahrain since 2007, coming via Dublin and Cambridge. He has worked as a teacher at St Christophers's Junior School since arriving on the island and that is where he met his lovely wife and long-suffering golf widow, Sarah.
He manager to get a few rounds on the old Riffa Golf Course before it was closed and has been a member of RGC since it opened in January 2009. If he's not at the course playing, there's a fair chance that he's watching, reading or talking about golf somewhere.
Ronan's favourite memories of RGC so far are caddying for former world number 1 Suzann Pettersen when she visited for the Bahrain Invitational tournament in 2012 and having the oppourtunity to play in a professional event when the MENA tour was hosted by the club in February 2020.
Ladies Vice Captain 2021/2022
Born 54 years ago in Tuscany (Italy), Cristina obtained a degree in Foreign Languages and Literature at IULM University in Milan, where she lived and worked until she married Filippo, a civil engineer from Florence. They moved to Abu Dhabi in 1997, and even though she was very tempted to pick up golf in the Emirates, she was occupied by working in 2 international schools and taking care of their first son Lorenzo. The Fantechi’s moved to beautiful Bahrain in the year 2000, which they have now called home for more than 20 years. Spending so long on the island, Cristina naturally engrained herself into the Italian community, where she helped promote & organise charity events under the patronage of the Italian Embassy, as well as teaching Italian as aforeign language for many years. Cristina’s tireless efforts and commitment to the Italian Bahraini Friendship Association (IBFA) also resulted in her appointment as Vice Chairman in 2014. Through the years, Cristina has also welcomed the opportunity to meet new friends and embrace the community mindset here in Bahrain - from obtaining an official licence as a professional Tour Guide by the Ministry of Tourism in Bahrain, to volunteering in charitable causes such as the Bahrain Breast Cancer Support Group (BBCSG). After 10 years of living in Saar, filled with great memories, most importantly welcoming their beautiful daughter Sara in 2006, Cristina and the family decided to buy a lovely villa in Riffa Views in 2011. Here she started taking golf lessons and became an “A.F.” member of the RGC. Cristina began taking part in first scramble competitions (the Think Pink events were particularly memorable!), always encouraged by amazingLady Captains of previous years such as Hanne, Dena and Karin to name a few. All who helped beginner golfers like her to develop a true passion for this sport, over the likes of tennis, yoga and skiing, which are some of her other hobbies (not to forget cooking!)
Cristina is very excited and honored to work with Captain Anne in her new role as Vice Captain, with the aim of improving her game, and more importantly to have fun out on the course with fellow golfers (whilst trying to remember all the stringent official and local rules!)