The Star (Nairobi)

30 October 2012

Kenya: Sports Minister Tells KGU to Build Structures Ahead of 2016 Olympics

Sports Minister Ababu Namwamba has urged the Kenya Golf Union (KGU) to put structures in place if is to be represented 2016 Olympics in Brazil.

Namwamba said with golf returning to the Olympics in 2016, it's imperative that the country send its best golfers to compete. "I'm asking the union to put up structures to ensure we pick the best players in the country to do us proud at Olympics by winning medals," added Namwamba.

Namwamba said plans are underway to have a public golf course at the Moi International Sports Centre, which he plans to inaugurate in the next two weeks.

"Preparations to get the course underway are almost complete and we hope to inaugurate it in two weeks time in a bid to give a chance to young golfers in the country to exploit the game," he added.

Namwamba made the remarks as he handed the flag to the Kenya team for East Africa golf Challenge set for November 5-11 in Bujumbura, Burundi.

Team captain David Opati said expressed confidence that the team will successfully defend the title. "We are confident we will win the title again," added Opati.

He said Kenya will face Uganda, Rwanda Burundi and Tanzania. Opati said golfing standards in the region are quite high. " The standards of golf in the region are quite high and we expect a competitive championship in Bujumbura," he said.

KGU boss Alfred Kariuki said the union has been striving to uplift golf standards in the country and are planning to make a maiden stab at the 2016 Olympic Games.

"The Junior Golf Foundation headed by Ashwin Gidoomal has been formed to help mould Olympic champions of the future with a grassroots network since the game is very unpopular among many Kenyans," noted Kariuki.

The Kenya team will be led by Opati, Matthew Omondi (Vetlab), Nelson Simwa (Vetlab), Sejay Wangai (Railways), Abdul Abraham (Great Rift), Kush Medirata (Sigona), Daniel Mbora and Matthew Wahome, Aden Balala (all from Mombasa). The team was selected following the conclusion of the Kenya Amateur Strokeplay Championship over a fortnight ago.

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