This was the second trophy for coach Stephen Kasaija, who also qualified the junior team to the 2019 Junior Golf World Cup
Uganda beat Kenya by 2.5-0.5 points to retain the Africa Region IV Golf Tournament that ended at the par-71 Bujumbura Golf Club course on Saturday.
This was Uganda’s second win in a row following the one they won at the inaugural edition at Nyali Golf Club in Kenya last year.
Despite fielding a relatively new team from the one that won last year, the Ugandan team that comprised of Joesph Cwinya-ai, Godfrey Nsubuga, Daniel Baguma and Rodell Gaita proved formidable against their bitter rivals Kenya in the final of the three-day event.
Kenya led the opening two rounds of stroke play (72 holes) with 889 gross (10.5pts), with Uganda finishing second on 894 (10pts); five strokes away, meaning they met in the final match-play round to decide who wins it as the rest fought for positions.
Uganda team captain Joseph Cwinya-ai squared it out with Kenya’s best golfer of the tournament, Sam Njoroge with rookie Godfrey Nsubuga beating Simon Njugu; 1UP while Daniel Baguma/ Rodell Gaita saw off Mutahi Kibugu/Zubair Khan in a similar fashion; 1UP to seal the victory for Uganda.
This was the second trophy for coach Stephen Kasaija, who also qualified the junior team to the 2019 Toyota Junior Golf World Cup.
“The boys were determined; we trained well and they were both mentally and physically fit. They also had a strong heart for the nation and good motivation and support from the union,” Kasaija stated.
UGU president Innocent Kihika was also in buoyant mood after the victory.
“It was more in the preparation, early camp, good discipline, experienced coach and dedicated manager who put in the time,” Kihika noted.
Youngster Godfrey Nsubuga from Mehta Golf Club was the surprise package for Uganda, producing the best score of the tournament, a four-under-par 67 in the last round of the stroke play competition.
“My game plan worked well. I was on for-one on all, the par 3’s on for-two on the par-5’s, so I scored pars and birdies,”
And on his match play victory, he said; “I approached the green well as Njugu went to the bunker. I putted twice and there was no chance for him so he forfeited the hole,” Nsubuga stated.
Kenya consequently finished second, Tanzania third, Burundi who fielded two teams finished fourth while their second side finished 6th. Ethiopia was fifth. Conspicuously missing in this year’s edition was Rwanda.
Uganda will host next year’s tournament following the election of UGU president Kihika as chairman of the Africa Golf Region 4.
Finals Results (Match-play)
Joseph Cwinya-ai v Samuel Njoroge; A/S
Godfrey Nsubuga bt Simon Njugu ; 1UP
Daniel Baguma/ Rodell Gaita bt Mutahi Kibugu/Zubair Khan; 1UP
Results after Day-2 (best three scorers)
1. Kenya (889gross)-10.5pts
Zubair Khan 70; 79; 78; 80
Sam Njoroge 70; 70; 69; 70
Simon Njogu 77; 78; 82; 77
Mutahi Kibugu 83; 76; 74; 89
2. Uganda (894)-10pts
Rodell Gaita 76; 76; 73; 74
Godfrey Nsubuga 75; 78; 80; 67
Joseph Cwiny-ai 77; 78; 72; 77
Daniel Baguma 84; 79; 74; 74
3. Tanzania (898gross)-9.5pts
Victor Joseph 71; 76; 73; 76
Abbas Adam 71; 76; 72; 77
Ally Mcharo 73; 84; 76; 78
Richard Mtweve 84; 81; 78; 76
4. Burundi-1 (925)-5.5pts
Jean Simbagoya 78; 78; 73; 78
Salum Hakizimana 81; 78; 77; 75
Harerimana Mousa 72; 79; 78; 86
Toyi Saidi 75; 85; 76; 85
5. Burundi-2 (940gross)-2.5pts
Abdoul Bizimana 78; 76; 74; 75
Rama Hakizimana 81; 78; 74; 80
Minani Djumapili 81; 86; 79; 82
Nzomukunda 90; 82; 84; 86
6. Ethiopia (978gross)-2pts
Bogale Tilaye 78; 80; 80; 82
Aregawi Hailay 80; 82; 83; 85
Kidane Haile 86; 85; 82; 78
Babore Dona 91; 87; 95; 82