What you need to know:
- This year’s Coast Open also known as the “Barry Cup’’ which is being sponsored by Safaricom has attracted a field of 72 players playing off handicap 12 and under
- Unlike last year, this year the seaside course is in excellent condition due to the ongoing rains in Mombasa, though the wind as usual, and the quick and tricky greens, will be a major factor
- Elsewhere, a huge field of 248 players will be at Royal Nairobi Golf Club, Kenya’s home of golf, for the NCBA Bank Golf series
The chase for points in the ongoing Kenya Amateur Golf Championship (KAGC) series now shift to Mombasa County this weekend, for the annual Coast Open golf tournament at the Links Mombasa Golf Club course.
Coming exactly a week after Limuru Open at Limuru Country Club which was won by Muthaiga’s Jay Sandhu, this year’s Coast Open also known as the “Barry Cup’’ which is being sponsored by Safaricom has attracted a field of 72 players playing off handicap 12 and under.
The field does not however include some of the country’s top amateurs including the four Dennis Maara, Adel Balala, Michael Karanga and John Lejirmah who recently won the Africa Region Four Championship in Uganda.
Kenya Golf Union (KGU) Vice Chairman and Tournament Director Philip Ochola said Thursday that the four leading amateurs plus 12 others are in a training camp in Limuru from Thursday to Sunday preparing for the Victoria Cup between Kenya and Uganda.
“On Monday they will take a break waiting for the team of 10 players to be named on Tuesday, hence the coach did not want the team to break until the final 10 players are named while the remaining six will continue training for future international events,’’ said Ochola.
In the absence of the top 16 including juniors, the battle in Mombasa this weekend will be between Coast-based players Gurbux Singh, William Kaguta and Henry Kamau, and Vet Lab’s Carl Wambasi, Isaac Makokha, Ebill Omollo, and Royal Nairobi’s Kevin Juma among others.
Unlike last year, this year the seaside course is in excellent condition due to the ongoing rains in Mombasa, though the wind as usual, and the quick and tricky greens, will be a major factor.
Teeing off for those drawn in the morning, is set for 7am, and 12 noon for the afternoon draw. “The course at the moment is in its best condition ever. With the rains that have been going on over the past two months, the fairways are carpet while we have prepared the greens well and ready for the event,’’ said Mombasa Golf Club captain James Gitonga.
Elsewhere, a huge field of 248 players will be at Royal Nairobi Golf Club, Kenya’s home of golf, for the NCBA Bank Golf series.
They will be battling it out for slots in the grand finale where the top finishers will win an all-expenses paid for trip to South Africa’s Fancourt Golf Resort in George.
This weekend’s event follows the first regional tournament under the NCBA golf series calendar held last weekend at Uganda Golf Club course, Kitante Road in Kampala Uganda where club captain Emmanuel Wamala and Eva Lwanga posted 43 and 46 respectively to clinch the top prizes.
Speaking ahead of the weekend event, at Royal, NCBA Group Managing Director John Gachora said:
“We are delighted to be headed to the Royal Nairobi Golf Club for the 11th tournament of the 2022 NCBA Golf series. Being the oldest golf course in the country, it certainly has a very strong history and therefore one that every ardent golfer wishes to play. We expect a very strong field and therefore great competition, similar or better to what we had the last time we were at the venue,” said Gachora.