Captain Gitonga swings to victory in Mashujaa Tourney in Mombasa

Overall winner James Gitonga sets his eyes on a perfect swing during the Duncan Ndegwa golf tourney at Mombasa Golf Club over the weekend. [Maarufu Mohamed, Standard].

Mombasa Golf Club Captain James Gitonga celebrated ‘Mashujaa’ day in style after emerging the overall winner of the Duncan Ndegwa golf tournament played at the Club’s par 71 Sea-link course over the weekend.

Playing off handicap 17 Gitonga’s luck came after surviving on a count back score of 41 stable ford points to carry the day, beating a team of 125 golfers who were all salivating for the amazing prizes.

“This is my best Mashujaa day gift I have ever had by winning this prestigious event, especially today playing under heavy winds and intermittent rains.I used my best skills ever but all in all it was an enjoyable day with lots of fun around the course. I know the same event will be back next year and I hope to defend the title, “said Gitonga.

He had tied on the same score with the Club’s green Keeper Tirus Githaiga playing off handicap 10 who was declared the Men winner , beating  handicap 9 Anthony Muita to the runners up slot by a two points difference.

Grace Kwamboka playing off handicap 19 claimed the Lady’s title on 40 points while handicap 28 Mesaidi Maarifa was the runners up after returning a score of 39 points.

The Club’s Former Chairman Johnson Wamunyua playing off handicap 12 on 28 points and handicap 35 Ayman Hassan with 33 points were the Senior and Junior winners respectively.

The gross winner was handicap 0 Henry Kamau who carded a one over 72 gross while handicap 11 Eric Nderitu on 41 points and 26 James Kagema with 40 points were the Guest and runners up winners respectively.

Club Captain James Gitonga said the tournament sponsored by ICEA Lion Group with others being the NCBA and ‘Wanakirima’ that attracted golfers from across the Country was organized by the Club in conjunction with the Duncan Nderitu Ndegwa Foundation to celebrate ‘Mashujaa’ day by honoring Mzee Duncan Ndegwa who is the first African and former Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) Governor.

The Captain further noted that the Club was proud to be associated with Ndegwa as a renowned philanthropist whose charitable works have benefited  thousands of Students and it so worthwhile to celebrate him on such a day like ‘Mashujaa’ which was set aside for Kenyans to pay tribute to their heroes.

“Mombasa Golf Club (The Front) today celebrates a golf enthusiast and a legend in the golf fraternity, philanthropist and Shujaa Duncan Nderitu Ndegwa in a special golf tournament.Ndegwa is a member of the golf fraternity's Hall of Fame, a distinguished member of the Commonwealth Golf Society, Senior Golf Society, and a dedicated patron of the Kenya Golf Union. In addition to his golf achievements, he is a dedicated philanthropist who has made remarkable contributions to our community over the years, “said Gitonga.

Legend Duncan Ndegwa makes a swing during the Duncan Ndegwa golf tourney at Mombasa Golf Club over the weekend. [Maarufu Mohamed, Standard].

The Captain further explained that Ndegwa now 98 years old was also the first Kenya Golf Union (KGU) Patron from 1976 before former President Mwai Kibaki took over 1983 and has played great roles in promoting the sports of Golf, encouraging Kenyans to play golf and protecting many golf courses around the Country from land grabbers.

ICEA LION Chief Executive Officer Philip Lopokoiyit said, “We are here to honor and celebrate Mr. Duncan Ndegwa for his remarkable achievements. In addition to his contributions to the golfing fraternity and as a philanthropist, Mr. Ndegwa has also been a non-executive director and Board member of long standing at ICEA LION Group since 1995. His leadership and guidance has been invaluable in our growth. We celebrate him today and thank the Mombasa Golf Club for this wonderful gesture of recognition.”

Duncan Nderitu Ndegwa is proof that ‘Age is just a number’ and is still an active golfer who finds time to play some holes at Nyali Golf and Country Club Course ,having started playing golf in 1954 at St. Andrews University in Scotland while a Student.

Ndegwa, currently a member of Nyali  Golf and Country Club and Nyeri Golf Club is the first African and longest serving Governor (RTD) of the Central Bank of Kenya and the first post-independence Head of Civil Service and Secretary to the Cabinet in Kenya who has also authored four books in his sunset years.

After Independence, Ndegwa mobilized Kenyans to play golf in various Courses like Railways, Muthaiga, Kiambu, Mombasa, Nyali, Sigona, and Royal among others.

‘Mashujaa’ Day, also known as Heroes' Day ("mashujaa" is Swahili for "heroes"), is a national day in Kenya, which is observed on 20 October as a public holiday to collectively honor all those who contributed towards the struggle for Kenya's independence or positively contributed in the post-independence Kenya.

Elsewhere at Nyali Golf and Country Club course, the Club Chairman Kamami Njoroge playing off handicap 26 carded 38 points to emerge the Ultimate Kirima Member winner during the Kirima  Golf  Tournament organized by the Members of the Kirima Golfing Society that attracted 226 golfers.

Henry Kamau playing off  handicap 3 was the Kirima member winner on 37 points while handicap 26 Nancy Gathungu brought a count  back score of 36 points to  claim the runners up slot  after tying on the same points with third placed handicap 30 Makena Mwige.

Zero handicap William Kaguta carded  a two under par 69 gross to emerge the gross winner while handicap 26b  Dr.Atul Shah on 44 points and  handicap 20 Justine Ongere with 43 points were  the  Men and  runners  up winners respectively.

Caroline Nyarangi playing off  handicap 27  beat the Ladies by claiming  the title after carding 38 points ,a point ahead  of handicap 22 Lena Breitner who was  the runners up.

Inayet Kudrat playing off handicap 21 was the best senior on 42 points and the best junior on 34 points was handicap 26 Karan Khagram.

The Kirima guest winner on 38 points was  handicap 6 Charles kariuki  while handicap 18 Duncan Mwaniki on 37 points  and  handicap 34 Vikram Kanji with 43 points were  the  Kirima guest runners up  and  high handicappers winners  respectively.

The daylong 18 holes tournament was jointly supported by Equity Bank, Family Bank,EABL under their White Cap crisp brand,Winstar security,Dala Dalal,Kericho Gold, Optiven,Moffat, and Wanakirima.

Chairman Kirima golfing Society Johnson Wamunyua thanked the club, golfers and supporters for making the event successful and said the event organized by the society members from the Mountain region some few months ago will continue to use golf sport in fostering great unity among the Kenyan Communities.

Club Chairman Kamami Njoroge in turn thanked the society, Supporters and golfers who turned up from various golf clubs around the Country and announced that the ICEA Lion King of the Course  grand finale will be hosted at the Club course next Saturday on October,28th.

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