Kenya nine ready to face Africa’s best in Malawi
Posted Tuesday, April 17 2012 at 21:59
- Coach Kimani says team vastly improved and ready to ruffle feathers in Africa Zone Six tourney
Kenya golf team for this year’s Africa Zone Six Championship resumed training at Royal Nairobi Golf Club course on Monday.
Speaking on Tuesday after their second training session, national coach Ali Kimani said the players were now more confidence than when they went into training two weeks ago.
“We are now concentrating on the short game after going through driving, fairway iron-shots,” said Kimani. The nine-man team took a break to participate in the 2012 Tannahill Shield at Royal from April 6 to 8. They returned into training last week and were to leave for Malawi during the weekend.
However, the Africa Zone Six Championship which brings together Africa’s top 13 golfing nations was postponed to Monday following the death of Malawi president Bingu wa Mutharika.
“The postponement in a way was good for us as it gave us enough time to prepare for the event. I think we have a lot more solid team than during last year’s East Africa Challenge Cup in Arusha,” said Kimani.
The team will continue training at Royal until they depart for Malawi on Sunday morning. The nine include Francis Kimani (captain), James Karanja (Limuru), Robinson Owiti, Mathew Omondi(Vet Lab), Frank Matilu (Muthaiga) and David Opati.
Others are Joseph Waweru Karanja (Golf Park), John Wangai (Railway) and the only junior in the team Abraham Abdullahi from the Great Rift Valley Golf Resort in Naivasha.
The team will be managed by Kenya Golf Union (KGU) vice chairman Alfred Kariuki while the KGU chairman Mwaniki Gachoka will be the leader of delegation.
Elsewhere, Mumias Golf Club’s Dismas Indiza over the weekend completed a three rounds total of five under par 205 to claim his first KCB Advantage Banking title this season at the par 70 Nyanza Golf Club course.
Indiza, who had set the pace with a four under par 66 in the first round and later a 69 in the second round, missed a number of birdie chances in the closing round.
A level par 70 however did the trick for him to beat Golf Park’s David Wakhu by four shots. He took home the top prize of Sh100,000.
Wakhu fired three over par 73 in the final round for a total of 209, having carded rounds of 67 and 69 earlier. Home pro David Odhimabo produced the final day’s best round, a four under par 66 for a total of 211 to finish third in the third leg of the 2012 KCB East Africa Golf Tour series which attracted 28 professionals.
Limuru’s John Kagiri with the second best round of 68 was fourth on his own with 214 and two shots behind him was Brian Njoroge who carded 73, 71 and 72 for 214.
Muthaiga’s Paul Thuo finished in sixth place with 218 after 71 in the final round.
At Muthaiga handicap 19 Simon Kariuki carded 18 and 21 for 39 points to emerge the overall winner of the Misitu Corporate Golf tournament sponsored by Kenya Forest Service and CIC Insurance to launch this year’s Misitu Golf Challenge.
Kariuki won by two points from second and third placed David Karuma of Thika and Muthaiga’s James Ondigo. Veteran golfer Steve Gakuo carded 36 to finish fourth after beating K. Njoroge, and Nganga Njau on countback. Charles Ngunjiri of Kenya Forest Service won the staff prize with 37 points and R. Njendu was thew lady winner with 31 points.
The team title went to the team of J. Kirika, M. Karugu, J. Gatonye, and P. Kanyugi with a total of 98 points. Nyali; Youngster Adel Balala fired nett 71 to claim the A division title in the April Mug sponsored by former captain Vishnu Dhutia. He beat the sponsor Dhutia and Karan Inamdar by two shots.