Gumikiriza ‘Black sheep’ Alfred lived up to the pressure he put on himself and won his maiden Nile Special national pool open championships, beating Amos Ndyagumanawe 6-4 in Lugogo over the weekend.
The pair was the only among the eight seeded players who managed to make it past the first round.
Not even blackout on three occasions in the indoor arena was going to
stand in the way of the most expensive pool player currently in the country.
After winning the first game, Gumikiriza went down two straight before also bouncing back with a couple of wins himself.
For a man who cruised into the final, Ndyagumanawe got a dose of his own medicine after he was put under pressure by his former teammate at Skin Samona.
The 20 year old conceded defeat in games seven and eight, which put Gumikiriza in pole position for the title with a 5-3 margin.
The fully packed arena had to wait a little longer as Gumikiriza failed to sink the eighth ball, a shot that would have sealed it, Ndyagumanawe capitalized to make it 5-4. Matters were to be settled in the ninth game when Gumikiriza who had exhibited excellent white management skills was at it again, forcing Ndyagumanawe to again conceded.
“Being this year’s champion puts pressure off my shoulders, because I have been promising people that am going to be champion this year no matter what,” Gumikiriza said. He pocketed USh2m and two pool tables, while Ndyagumanawe went home with USh1m.
Brian Kiviri defeated Isaac Lwanga to finish third and both players were awarded USh0.75m. Exactly 2920 players took part in the 13-week long competition that started with qualifiers from all corners of Uganda.
2012- Alfred Gumikiriza
2011- Khalifan Ntwali
2010- Turigye Jonan
2008- Turigye Jonan
2004 and 2007- not held
2002- Bob Minani
Route to the finals
Gumikiriza (Seed 5) Ndyagumanawe (Seed 4)
Henry Juuko 3:0 first round Patrick Jemba 3:2
Yvez Kaneza 3:2 round of 64 Allan Nsubuga 3:1
Rodney Segirinya 4:0 round of 32 Ronnie Kalungi 4:1
Dino Kayongo 4:3 round of 16 Jamil Azibual 4:0
Uzairu Kamoga 4:1 quarter finals Jimmy Okello 4:1
Isaac Lwanga 4:2 semi finals Brian Kiviiri 4:3