TANZANIAN youth, Isiaka Daudi managed to make a cut in the 2023 Kenya Amateur Stroke Play Golf Championship that climaxed over the weekend at the par 72 Karen Country Club, Nairobi, Kenya.
The star player from Tanzania People’s Defence Forces (TPDF) of Lugalo golf club of Dar es Salaam and his country-mate, George Sembi of TPC Moshi Club of Moshi, Kilimanjaro had impressive show to emerge among the 52 golfers who had made it to the second round’s cut out of 123 golfers enrolled to play in the tournament.
The four-day 72-hole competition drew top amateurs from five countries; Uganda, Rwanda, India, Tanzania and host Kenya battle it out for the top honour.
Tanzania was represented by three golfers, including Michael Masawe, also from Lugalo, who could not find his excellent form and exited early after the dismal two rounds’ results of 91 and 85 gross strokes.
Daudi who finished 36th overall, grossed aggregate score of 320 strokes in 74,86,80 and 80 while Sembi finished 42nd with aggregate score of 324 (79,80,77, 88).
Speaking from Nairobi after the event, Daudi said the competition was stiff, but he said he is relieved to manage a cut, though he did not achieve his goal of emerging a champion.
“The competition was very tough, I started very well after the first round, but I endured the biggest challenge in the greens, they gave me a lot of trouble, and I couldn’t putt well,” he explained.
“Still, I’m thankful I made the cut, that is a big and important thing. I learned the lesson and I hope to continue improving so that I do well in future,” he added.
The tournament saw a Kenyan from Kiambu Golf Club, Michael Karanga emerge the champion in the NCBA Bank-sponsored tournament with an impressive 11 under par 277 (71,67,70,69), beating Muthaiga’s Taimur Malik by six shots (68,70,71,74).
He becomes the first player to win both Kenya’s major golf titles, having won the Kenya Amateur Match Play Championship three weeks ago.
Uganda’s Godfrey Nsubuga finished third with a one-under-par total of 287 (70,72,72,73), just a shot better than Vipingo’s Adel Balala who carded 76 for level par 288 (72,70,70,76).
Karanga earned Kanya Sh96,000 (about 2m/-) plus 205 KAGC series points in addition to 105 bonus points for returning an all-under-par score in the four rounds.