By Maarufu Mohamed
Thika’s professional Simon Ngige took an early lead at the fourth leg of the Kenya Commercial Bank golf series at the par 72 Royal Nairobi Golf Club.
Ngige bounced back from poor show in the last KCB East Africa event at the Nyanza Golf Club where he finished a disappointing sixth, but won the order of merit in the same series in 2010.
Wednesday, he played an impressive round of seven under par 65 to carry an over-night lead of three shots.
Ngige started with back-to-back birdies on the par five hole two and par four hole three, picked other shots on the par four hole five, par five hole seven and par three hole eight for a first nine score of 33.
In the second nine, Ngige sunk a birdie on the par three hole 13, posted back-to-back eagles on the par five 14th and par five 15th, before dropping a shot on the par four 16 for a score of 32.
“I played well today because I have been practicing on this course for the last one week,” said Ngige.
“The course today was playing long, but I managed to hit 80 per cent of my ball on the fairway, I also putted well. I managed 28 putts today,” he added.
His closest challenger, new Professional Golfers of Kenya (PGK) chairman Riz Charania finished s second on four under par 68.
Charania started with a birdie on the par three sixth hole, sunk an eagle on the par five seventh hole, but dropped two shots on the par three eighth hole and par four ninth for a score of 35.
In the second hole, the Windsor player picked a shot on the par four tenth hole, dropped a single shot on the par four 12th hole, before recovering with birdies on the par three 13th, par five 14th and par five 15th for a score of 33.