Muthaiga Golf Club's Greg Snow in past action, January 18, 2021. [Mose Sammy]

Magical Kenya Open organisers have tipped six top Kenyans from the recently concluded 2020/21 Safari Tour series to make the cut at the forthcoming tournament slated for Karen Golf and Country Club in Nairobi on March 18-21.

The players include Mumias-based Dismas Indiza, who triumphed in the series on 362 points.

"This follows their impressive performance in the nine legged Safari Tour series where they either finished with a two or three under par score," Tournament Director Patrick Obath said in an interview television broadcaster, KTN.

"Should they maintain the same tempo, they will definitely make the cut at the Open," Obath added.

Other golfers who ended the Safari circuit in top six are Greg Snow (Muthaiga), Simon Ngige (Thika SC), Erick Ooko (Golf Park), C.J Wangai (Sigona) and Samuel Njoroge (Railways).

Indiza supported Obath's sentiments saying; "I missed the cut in 2019, but I'm now putting in more work that will help me progress to the third round during the event."

Thika's finest, Simon Ngige, who emerged third in the series on 316.5 points, has set his eyes on the elusive cut mark.

Should he qualify, it will be the fifth time that Ngige will be progressing to the third and crucial day in the tournament that was awarded European status two years ago.

"I'm happy to have secured a spot at the Open this year. It will be my 10th attempt for the trophy in the competition," the 33-year-old father of two said.

"My aim is to focus on my game and my performance will definitely improve on the pitch," he said.

Simon Ngige at Safari Tour Golf series at Limuru Country Golf club on Wednesday, Oct 7, 2020. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

Obath added that this year's competition will be different due to several factors. First, because of the Covid-19 protocols, a lot of traditions at the event will be cut off including the boisterous village where it gets busier in the evening.

"We won't have spectators at the Open due to guidelines issued by the Ministries of Sports and Health. We might have very little number of spectators mainly drawn from our key sponsors," said Obath.

Obath praised the Karen course, saying it's one of the best.

"The course has sufficient facilities that matches up to the European Tour levels. We need a driving range of 350 yards and only Karen has that long shot in the whole country," he said.

The golf administrator is happy that Karen has invested heavily in their course, which is in good condition.

"We need security for technical and broadcast equipment including cables and television towers and Karen has that assurance," he said.

From Left; Local Pro Golfers Dismas Indiza, Samuel Njoroge, Robson Chonoi, Jacob Okello, Riz Charania, Matthew Omondi and Greg Snow pose for a photo at Uhuru Park during the iconic photoshoot with Kenya's Top golf professionals on March 03, 2021. [Stafford Ondego, Standard]

This year's tournament will also be different in that players, caddies, officials and the media will be subjected to operate from a bubble due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

"There will be pre-tests for everyone before the event. After that, everybody will enter the bubble where they will operate from until the end of the two European Tour events (Kenya Open and the Kenya Savannah Classic)," said Obath, adding that daily random tests will be done and that players will be tested after every event.

All parties involved in both tournaments will stay in two designated hotels. The organisers have also secured an exclusive transport system to and from the venue and hotels.

Kenya's free-to-air television network, KTN, which is the official tournament media partner, will, for five hours everyday, air the action live.

"Since we will not have fans at the venue, spectators are urged to tune in to KTN to watch the exciting live coverage everyday," Obath said.