Despite dropping his shots in the closing round, home player Daniel Nduva still managed to clinch the 50th edition of the annual Nyali Open Golf Championship at the par 71 Nyali Golf and Country Club course on Sunday.
Starting the final day with a clear nine shots lead from Golf Park’s William Odera, Nduva, bogeyed the par three third hole, after missing a birdie at the opening hole. He however birdied the fifth, to finish the front nine on level par.
Things turned out for the worse at the back nine though he had picked two back-to-back birdies at the 10th and 11th. “From the 12th, my game just changed for the worse, as besides the bogey at the 12th, I double-bogeyed the 14th then bogeyed the 15th, 16th and 17th which ruined my chances of a low round finish, though I am still very happy winning the open,’’ said Nduva after receiving the trophy from Kenya Golf Union (KGU) chairman Anthony Murage.
He said the course was in its best condition ever and easy for one to shoot under par though the heat became even worse in the final round. His final round four over par 75 gave him an all rounds aggregate of two under par 211.
Besides winning his home title, Nduva was also crowned Lowest Average Gross Champion of the season with an average score of 71.4 gross, while Kenya Railway Golf Club’s Samuel Njoroge was named the best golfer of the year 2019 with a score of 602 points, with Vet Lab Sports Club voted the best club of the season.
Nduva also became the first player to win the tournament on under par score since Richard Ainley’s one under par victory in 1999, thanks his second round five under par round of 65. On the other hand, William Odera, a former Kenya Amateur Matchplay champion, shot two over par 73 for a total of five over par 218 while Nyali’s Dickson Baraza was third on 223 gross.
Taking the first round gross was John Timbe of Nyali on level par 71, and Muthaiga’s Anthony Irungu took round two on 74 while the third round gross winner was Peter Rimui of Thika on 71 gross.
Winning the overall title was Nyali’s Liban Roba with a score of 216 nett, winning by three shots from Ethiopia-based Peter Pemberton and Nyali’s Henry Kamau who both posted 219 nett.
The three rounds nett winners were Fidelis Kimanzi of Railways, Karan Inamdar of Nyali and Frank Munyuah of Ruiru on 69, 70 and 72 nett respectively. This year the Inter-Club challenge was won by Nduva and his brother George Munyao on 289 gross, with Sammy Mulama and Henry Kamau finishing second on 294 gross. The event was sponsored by Contech Container Technology, Samsung and Shikara Limited.
Speaking during the prize-giving ceremony, KGU chairman Murage paid great tribute to the management of Nyali Golf and Country Club for keeping the course in an excellent condition all the time. He congratulation the club for marking 60 years and hosting the Nyali Open for 50 years without fail.
“You have one of the finest golf course that has remained in an excellent condition throughout the years and it is because of this, that the union has chosen Nyali to host the Victory Cup between Kenya and Uganda in June 2020,’’said Murage.
Murage said the club through its junior programme which was started in 2005, has managed to produce excellent players such as Nduva, Mathew Wahome (now a pro), Agil Is-Haq and Adel Balala among many others.
A total of 60 players turned up for this year’s open and they included Uganda national team captain Joseph Chinywaai who however didn't play well.