GACHERU: Kenya hosts African championship

The Kenya Golf Union (KGU) is all set to host the eighth edition of the Africa Amateur Golf Team Championship (AAGTC) next week. This will be the first time Kenya will be hosting one of the most prestigious elite amateur golf team championship.

According to KGU Chairman Anthony Muhoro, hosting this championship is a privilege. “It is a great honour and privilege for both the Union and the Country to host the 2015 AAGTC,” he said.

“We expect to host teams from 15 nations and we look forward to giving them a uniquely Kenyan experience.”

The KGU selected the ever-green Limuru Country Club to host the 2015 AAGTC and the condition of the golf course, the enthusiasm of the club members, especially the “Limuru Warriors” this week has justified the union’s decision.

“I have no doubt that participants will enjoy playing the scenic and challenging Limuru Country Club, one of the top golf courses in Africa. The union has no doubt that teams will have a memorable and unique golfing experience at Limuru,” Muhoro added.

At stake at Limuru CC next week will be the AAGTC title and top honours for the best individual golfers. The AAGTC format allows for teams of three or four players from each country, playing over four rounds of stroke play, with the best three scores per round counting towards the total team score. The team with the lowest gross score is declared the winner.

Teams that have confirmed participation include defending champions South Africa, hosts Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Zambia, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Tunisia, Mauritius, Nigeria, Egypt, Seychelles, Botswana, and Cote d’Ivoire. The teams from Ethiopia and Ghana, who had previously confirmed their participation have pulled out under unclear circumstances.

The Kenyan team will be led by Limuru’s John Karichu and includes two other Limuru warriors – John Kariuki and Paul Muchangi. Bo Ciera and Jay Sandhu, both from the Royal Nairobi Golf Club complete the Kenyan line up. Golf professional Brian Njoroge will coach the host team who are hoping to win the AAGTC trophy for the first time.

The team from South African is strong, they are young and are all plus-handicap golfers. The team captain is 20-year old Andre Nel, a +2 handicap golfer who will be on his first assignment for SA.

The rest of the team includes 21-year old Aubrey Beckley, +3 handicap, 23-year old Teaghan Gauche, +2 handicap and 24-year old Matthew Spacey, +2 handicap. The SA team have won six of the last AAGTC team trophies and they will be looking to keep up their impressive run at this event.

Team SA won the inaugural event in 2001, they successfully defended their championship in Botswana in 2003 and again in Uganda in 2005, Namibia in 2007, Egypt in 2011 and Swaziland in 2013.

Action at the Limuru Country Club tees off on the 12th of October, with a round played each day until the 15th of October, 2015. Come and support your country and watch some top quality amateur golf.