Kenya Golf Guide

Nathan Kalumbu follows his tee shot at a past Dasani Gala at Windsor Club.


The intrigues of a “Team” contest were on display once more at the 11th leg of Dasani Golf Gala 2011 season held at the Kenya Railway Golf Club; David Mbatia, a handicap-7 golfer, was on top form, playing the golf of his life and posting a 3-under par gross score of 46 points.

On the other hand, Claudio Maragia, a handicap-14 golfer, played a mediocre at best round of 28 points; however, it is Maragia, courtesy of his team-mates, who will feature at the Dasani Golf Gala Grand Finale, whilst Mbatia can only hope for an invite from the Coca-Cola Company to participate as a guest at the Finale!

The Dasani Golf Gala, now in its second year, is a team contest, with qualification into the Finale being decided on a team rather than individual basis. Mbatia’s impressive performance was unfortunately not supported by his team mates, who played rather poorly to let down a deserving champion on the day.

Mbatia started his round on a shaky note, posting bogeys on the first two holes before finding his swing to finish the opening nine holes with a 1-over gross score for 21-stable ford points. On the back nine, Mbatia made minced meat of the golf course with his long drives off the tee; six birdies and two bogeys later, a 4-under par gross score followed for a massive 25-stable ford points and a total of 46 points.

Speaking after the prize giving ceremony, Mbatia could not hide his disappointment. “I played really good golf and to fail to proceed to the Finale is a huge disappointment,” Mbatia said. “I would like to urge Coca-Cola to ensure that top individuals get considered for qualification.” In response, Daniel Koech from Coca-Cola promised to invite Mbatia to participate as a guest at the Gala’s Grand Finale.

The team of Jonathan Mungai, Harris Kiarie, Muigai Githu and Claudio Maragia returned a team score of 109 points to claim top spot.

Githu anchored the team with 39-points whilst Kiarie and Mungai both contributed 35-points. Maragia was the team’s “wiki-leaks” with 28-points. “I was leaking points through out the golf course, so I would prefer to be referred to as the wiki-leaks and not the weakest link,” Maragia pleaded. “This is why a team contest is great, you can play poorly as an individual and still win!”

The team of David Kigomo, Abbas Nasser, John Wangai and giginder Padam finished second to claim the second qualification slot. Kogomo lead the team with 42-points, Nasser added 36-points and Padam was average with 30-points. Wangai, a handicap-1 golfer had a bad day managing only 29 points.

Mbatia was the top individual not in a qualifying team with 46 points, whilst former Captain Isaac Gichia was the runner up with 39 points. Chege Kiragu was third with 38 points.

The guest winner was Raymond Nyanchoga with 37 points and Tim Kiburi was the guest runner up with 33 points.

The Dasani Golf Gala now heads to the Karen Country Club before moving to Nyeri Club, Eldoret Club, Nyanza Club and Kisii Golf Club. The Dasani Golf Gala concludes on the 27th of August 2011 at the Karen Country Club. Winners of the Gala will win a VIP trip to the TOUR Championship, presented by Coca-Cola, at the East Lake Golf Club in Altanta, the home of the Coca-Cola Company.

Meanwhile, John Mathai proved the worthy golfer at the NIC Bank Golf Day held at scenic and challenging nine-hole golf course on the slopes of Mt. Kenya at the Nanyuki Sports Club. Mathai was on point posting impressive 43-stableford points. Mathai bore the heat quite well, opening his scoring with 24-points, shaking off competition from the likes of Jibran Butt and Khumran Butt who emerged second and third with 42-points and 41-points respectively.

On a day attended by golfers from the Nyeri Club and Nyahururu Sports Club, it was the hosts who dominated. Noman Butt claimed the first nine with 23 points whilst Ben Mathu claimed the second nine with 23 points.

The biggest surprise of the day came in the form of Vice Club Captain Nanyuki, Helen Kurutu who managed to claim the piga mingi category much to the amusement of fellow golfers; in her defense, Kurutu, said her performance was affected by her administrative duties. In the guest category Ken Mambo finished on top with 37 points followed closely by Ndegwa Thuku on 36 points.

Club Captain Peter Demello termed the NIC Bank Golf Day one of the most enjoyable so far and expressed gratitude to NIC Bank for queuing up Nanyuki Sports Club as one of its destinations in the nine-part NIC Bank Golf Series championship. NIC Bank used the opportunity to introduce potential customers to their range of products including their brokerage subsidiary NIC Securities (NICS).

The NIC Bank Golf Day series now move to the Nyanza Club on August 13th where members from Kakamega, Mumias, Kericho, Kisii and Nandi Bears will meet to enjoy the hospitality of NIC Bank.

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