Kenya: 'King of the Course' Series Heads to Nanyuki

21 January 2021

The Nanyuki Sports Club course, one of the oldest golf clubs in the country having been established way back in 1926, is the next stop-over this weekend in the 2021 ICEA Lion 'King of the Course' golf series.

Like last weekend's third leg of the series at Ruiru Sports Club where a field of 289 golfers tackled the par 72 course, this weekend's tournament has received an overwhelming entry of 160 players with Machakos Golf Club, the virtual home of the ICEA Lion King of the course, leading with the largest entry of 34 players.

This field is obviously big for a nine-hole course, though Nanyuki Sports Club, well known for its events management, and excellent quality of golf course, is definitely up to the task and those travelling from outside the region are assured of an exciting outing.

During last year's tournament which was the last in the 2020 series following the cancellation of the others because of Covid-19 pandemic, Kim Nderitu, a member of both Nanyuki and Thika Sports Club, beat a field of 102 golfers to emerge the overall winner. He posted 38 points, to win on countback from men winner Marlin Ndegwa and veteran John Mathai.

The series which started at Machakos Golf Club as an annual event then known as the "Year Opener" golf tournament, will this year feature events in Nandi Bears and Nyali Golf and Country Club in Mombasa.

Meanwhile Thika Sports Club course offers the solution for those not so keen to travel to Nanyuki, as the par 72 course, usually the home of the Winston Churchill Cup, and currently in an excellent condition, will host the 2020 Chairman's Prize where outgoing chairman Chris Kinuthia has lined up a host of sponsors to ensure his Covid-19 pandemic affected term of office winds up well.

Elected on January 1, 2020 Kinuthia saw a number of the club's activities including golf events put on hold until half way through the year when golf and other social activities were allowed to resume in the country. "It was a tough year for our club just like others, but I am happy I was able to accomplish some of the projects such as the commissioning and launching of the new kitchen," said Kinuthia.

His chairman's prize which has attracted over 200 players is being sponsored by among others, Canna Nutritions Maize Meal, Legendary Brands, Lucozade, Ribena, Suntory, Heineken, EABL, Illusionists, Centum, Nanyuki Mall and friends of the chairman.

"Its not very easy at the moment to convince corporates to sponsor golf. I am therefore very grateful to all these sponsors who have agreed to come and support me," said Kinuthia.

Elsewhere, the hunt for points towards the Kenya Amateur Golf Championship (KAGC) series and World Amateur Ranking gets underway with 62nd edition of the annual Sigona Bowl at Sigona Golf Club where a field of 96 players was drawn to battle it out for the Bowl plus the points.

The field for this year's event being sponsored by Turf Machineries and Irrigation courtesy of the Kenya Golf Union Executive Philip Ocholla, had to be reduced to those playing off handicap five and below due to over subscription.

Teeing off for Saturday's opening round is set for 6.50am followed by the second round in the afternoon, with the third and final round set for Sunday morning.

Among the stars drawn include former Match play champion Paul Muchangi of Limuru, Nyali's Adel Balala who won the amateur title during last weekend's Safari Tour event at Great Rift Valley Golf Resort, Royal Nairobi's Kevin Juma and Kenya Railway Golf Club's John Lejirmah among other leading golfers in the country.

Down at the Coast, Nyali Golf and Country Club captain Aameen Dhanji is staging his Captain's Prize being sponsored by Seven Stars Limited, Badar Pharmacy, Habari Insurance Brokers, Crown Gold Beverages and Friends of the Captain.

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