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Heat up your golf game at the Golf Channel Amateur Tour's Duel in the Desert in Mesquite, Nevada

By Bill Bowman, Contributor

MESQUITE, Nev. -- It's that time again -- time to put your golf game on display and see if it's up to par with some of the best amateur players anywhere.

Duel in the Desert - 2010 winners
Mark Sasser and Matt McDevitt won the Casablanca flight in the 2010 Duel in the Desert.
Duel in the Desert - 2010 winnersGolf Channel Amateur Tour's Duel in the DesertDuel in the Desert golf tournamentCasaBlanca Golf Club - hole 3Palmer Course at Oasis Golf ClubFalcon Ridge GC in Mesquite - No. 15

Welcome to the Golf Channel Amateur Tour's eighth annual Duel in the Desert.

The golf tournament is open to everyone, not only Golf Channel Amateur Tour members. Set for Feb. 3-5, 2011 in Mesquite, it will pit two-person teams in three formats over three stunning courses in a world-class destination. Are you up for the challenge?

The Duel in the Desert will be played at CasaBlanca Golf Club, Falcon Ridge Golf Club and the Palmer Course at Oasis Golf Club. It will test your golf game as well as your ability to mesh with your partner. The 54-hole event features a scramble round, a modified alternate-shot round and a best-ball round, with the three scores added together to determine a winner. Teams will be flighted by handicaps but will compete straight-up during the event.

"The Duel in the Desert is a real unique event for us," said Rick Adamek, Golf Channel's director of events division. "It's our season kickoff, and it does draw a lot of attention with the three different formats. You don't find too many tournaments structured that way, and that's why we've had so much success with it."

So bring your partner and your "A" game and prepare to battle some of the best players from around the country. It's three days of golf, sun and fun. And remember, sign up soon. Last year's event sold out quickly, and you can bet many of those players will be back. Don't get left out.

Duel in the Desert: The cost

Duel in the Desert participants will receive three nights at the CasaBlanca Hotel and Casino, three rounds of tournament play in addition to pairings and dinner parties. Cost is $800 for double occupancy and $850 for single occupancy.

"It's all-inclusive, said Adamek. "It includes the room, the golf, the prize pool, the welcome party, two dinner parties and the Anheuser-Busch products provided by Nevada Beverage. It's just a great value."

No one to partner up with? No problem.

"We have had a lot of people sign up as singles, and we pair them up through a random draw," Adamek said. "A lot of those guys now get together and play every year. It's pretty neat when you see a guy from Tampa and a guy from Pittsburgh getting together each year to play. Guys can come with their dad, their brother or their buddy. And we do have husbands and wives playing."

The golf courses

CasaBlanca Golf Club is a par-72 Cal Olsen design that stretches to 7,036 yards, though all of the layouts play shorter during tournament play. The par 5s on this golf course are among the most challenging holes in the event. Birdies are possible, but beware of trying to get home in two on these well guarded greens.

The Oasis Golf Club's Palmer course is aptly named for the King himself, who designed this masterpiece. The par-71 layout features many elevated tees and dogleg holes that are a great test for shot-making abilities.

Falcon Ridge Golf Course was designed by Kelby Hughes. The par-72 course is well known for amazing elevation changes that will force players to think before choosing clubs.

All three Duel in the Desert venues offer beautiful views and test players from the opening tee shot to the final putt.

Sign up now

Face it, you've always thought you had the game to compete with -- and beat -- the best. Now's your chance to prove it on the Golf Channel Amateur Tour. With three rounds and three formats, players must be in top form to win. There won't be any one-hit wonders here. The Duel in the Desert champions will prove they have game -- from start to finish.

"We really wanted a Vegas-type atmosphere with the kickoff event, and in Mesquite we definitely have it," Adamek said. "You've got golf, gambling and everyone having a great time. Everything is right here, the golf, the dinners, the parties. It really is a guy trip -- or a buddy trip. It brings a little bit of a Ryder Cup feel to it in that you've got a partner to help out.

"We have guys who are really serious about playing and guys who are out to just have a lot of fun, so the formats work for everyone. It's always a great event and a great place to be."

For more information, contact Rick Adamek at radamek@golfchannel.com or click here to register.

Bill BowmanBill Bowman, Contributor

Bill Bowman is a Las Vegas-based writer who has more than 40 years in the sports-writing business. He's spent the past 16-plus years covering the golf scene in Vegas and has teed it up for magazine profiles with celebrities including comedian Bill Engvall, actor Jeffrey Donovan (USA's Burn Notice), ESPN personality Colin Cowherd, NASCAR's Kurt Busch, Collective Soul's Ed Roland, the Baltimore Ravens' Jonathan Ogden and many others.

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