Kenya Golf Guide

AIMING HIGH: Thika's Simon Ngige leads a field of 44 pros at the fourth leg of KCB Golf Tour in Arusha.


A record field of 44 players probably the largest gathering of professional golfers in the East African region, will be converging at the Arusha Gymkhana Golf Club in Arusha Tanzania for the fourth leg of the KCB East Africa Golf Tour.
And as usual, out of the total entry, Kenya, will be represented by a strong contingent of 28 players. The KCB Bank Tanzania Open, a four-rounds tournament for the professional is taking part at Arusha Gymkhana for the second year running.
It is the second event in the four regional events that are offering one million shillings in prize fund. The first regional event within the popular tour took place at Muthaiga Golf Club in March and the third event will be the KCB Bank Rwanda Open from May 25 to 28.
The KCB Divisional Director, Public Affairs and Communications Kepha Bosire said the bank was most delighted with the development and growth of the tour. “This will be the first tour event outside Kenya this year and we are excited with the good number of entries,” he added, “The  tour has grown from strength to strength and we are proud to be helping grow the sport in the region.”
The event in Arusha has also attracted many amateurs from Nairobi which shows how popular the tour has become” said Bosire.
Like the Muthaiga event, this week’s tournament has attracted players outside the East African region. At least one entry each from Ethiopia and Zimbabwe were received though it is most unfortunate that Uganda which will host the fourth regional event in July has only entered one player Deo Akope who emerged the winner of the KCB Bank Tanzania Open last year. Host Tanzania will however have a field of nine players.
“The large entry of more than 40 players in Arusha shows the popularity of the series and I would like to thank KCB for that. I am a bit disappointed though that only one player from Uganda has entered” said Professional Golfers of Kenya (PGK) Chairman, Charan Thethy.
The Kenyan contingent include the new kid in the block Boniface Simwa who turned professional early last week. Simwa was among the two amateurs who made the cut in the recent Barclays Kenya Open at Muthaiga and it will be interesting to see how he fares in his first pro event.
Last year Deo Akope beat Kenya’s Simon Ngige and Richard Ainley in a sudden death playoff, to claim his first KCB East Africa Tour title. He will once again be facing a strong challenge from among others, Simon Ngige, Dismas Indiza, Greg Snow, Nicholas Rokoine, Richard Ainley and Jacob Okello. Currently Indiza leads the series with 46.9 points though he is yet to win any event while next to him is Ngige who won at his home course Thika and later at Nyanza Golf Club Kisumu.
This year KCB has put together a sponsorship package of Sh8.7m for the eight events whose grand finale worth Sh3m will take place at Nyali Golf and Country Club Mombasa from August 10. michaelhandtasches michaelhandtasches

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