The Uganda Golf Club course is in fine shape to host the 2020 Uganda Golf Open

2020 Uganda Golf Open Championship:

  • 26th – 28th November: Ladies Open
  • 2nd – 5th December: Amateurs
  • 3rd – 6th December: Professionals

*At Uganda Golf Club, Kampala

When Tooro Golf Club member Ronald Rugumayo beat clubmate Ronald Otile on sudden death during the 2017 Uganda Amateur Golf Open championship at the Uganda Golf Club in Kampala – Kitante, the passionate cheering gallery played its role.

This was the last time that Kitante hosted the signature event on the Uganda Golf Union (UGU) calendar.

In 2018, Ronald Otile claimed his third amateur title at the dog-legged Entebbe Golf Club course and during the subsequent edition, Nyali Golf Club member Daniel Nduva, a Kenyan won at the Lake Victoria Resort and Spa.

The Uganda Golf Club – Kitante, Kampala

After two years in Entebbe and Kigo, the open returns to the par 72 Uganda Golf Club Course, popularly known as Kitante.

Kitante is a famous stream that cuts across this vast golfing facility situated in the heart of Uganda’s capital city, Kampala.

Jackson  Karyarugookwe, Captain Uganda Golf Club asserts that the Union has a lot of confidence in their club dubbed as the home of golf in Uganda.

Uganda Golf Club is no doubt the home of golf in Uganda. We are excited to have the open back in Kampala as the Uganda Golf Union has a lot of confidence in us. We are ready to host the golfers and guests amid the Coronavirus pandemic. We have the capacity to control every situation and shall work with the course marshals to enforce the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s) through the championship.

Jackson  Karyarugookwe, Captain Uganda Golf Club
Jackson  Karyarugookwe, Captain Uganda Golf Club Credit: Edgar Hamala

The Uganda Open series will tee off with the ladies version on 26th November for three rounds (54 holes) until Saturday, 28th November.

Then the amateurs event, marking the 79th appearance since 1932 will swing into action on 2nd December for four rounds (72 holes) until the 5th December 2020.

For the first time in the history of the open, the professionals event will tee-off on day two of the amateurs’ championship.

Tournament director John Katto explains this scernaio that will witness the best performing amateurs miss the opportunity to gel with the professionals, like the case has been since 2015.

We have been propelled to re-design the open. The professionals will tee off on the second day of the amateurs open. This is deliberate because we are working within the budgetary estimates we have at the disposal and time frame of 11 days to have the tournament done and dusted.

Uganda Open Tournament director John Katto
Uganda Open Tournament director John Katto Credit: Edgar Hamala
Moses Matisko, the president of Uganda Golf Union (UGU) smiles during the press conference

Uganda Golf Union president Moses Matisko insists that the major focus this year is adherence to SOPs to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

“This is the first major golfing event since COVID-19 broke out we are hoping that our event will be a benchmark for other sporting disciplines. 360 players are registered for the tournament so far” Matisko stated.

The professionals total kitty is Shs. 100,000,000 that will be shared by the top 30 paid ranks golfers.

Katto confirms that their will be no cut after two rounds like the norm has been over the years.

“There will be no cuts and a kitty totaling up to Shs100m that is set to be split between 30 professional golfers who will be awarded according to merit. The winner will take 22.5 % of the pro-kitty and the remainder of the players will share 77.5 % of the prize money in ascending order.” Katto clarified.

As of Thursday, November 19, 2020, 78 professionals had registered with 29 Kenyans, 1 South African, 3 from Nigeria, Senegal (1), Zimbabwe (10), Cameroon (5), France (2), Cote D`Ivoire (1), Ghana (1), Malawi (1) and 3 Zambians.

The tournament will end with a prize-giving cocktail on Sunday, December 6 at the Uganda Golf Club in Kitante.

Martha Babirye gestures after putting at the 18th pin

Martha Babirye won the ladies event last year at the picturesque Lake Victoria Golf Resort and Spa.

Daniel Nduva from Kenya took the amateurs gong and Zambian professional ace Madalisto Muthiya was champion in the pros category.

Madalisto had also smiled to the podium in 2015 at Uganda Golf Club, Kampala.

Cast of winners:

Amateur Category:

  • 1932 – H.Davidson (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1933 – H.Davidson (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1934 – R.W Hooker (Muthaiga Golf Club)
  • 1935 – J.D Rankine (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1936 – J.D Rankine (Uganda Golf Clun)
  • 1937 –  H. Davidson (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1938 – R.W Bun (Mombasa Golf Club)
  • 1939 – J.E Higginson
  • 1940 – 1947 – NOT HELD
  • 1948 – D. F Stewart (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1949 – A.Q Roberts (Kitale Golf Club)
  • 1950 – N.C Elwell (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1951 – N.C Elwell (Mwanza Golf Club)
  • 1952 – J.R Cooke (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1953 – R.W Hooper (Nairobi Golf Club)
  • 1954 – M.Johnson (Kabalae Golf Club)
  • 1955 – J.R Oglive (Kitale Golf Club)
  • 1956 – J.R Oglive (Kitale Golf Club)
  • 1957 – Ian McAdam (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1958 – Brian Malone (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1959 – Ian McAdam (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1960 – Mike Johnson (Mbale Golf Club)
  • 1961 – Mike Johnson (Mbale Golf Club)
  • 1962 – Mike Johnson (Mbale Golf Club)
  • 1963 – John Higginson (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1964 –  John Higginson (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1965 –  Muhammed Rajab (Nairobi Golf Club)
  • 1966 – John Higginson (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1967 – I.Pattinson (Dar es Salaam Golf Club)
  • 1968 – G.Burrows (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1969 –  M.Rajab(Nairobi Golf Club)
  • 1970 – M.Couma (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1971 – J. Kahugu (Sigona Golf Club)
  • 1972 – Ben Okello (Masaka Golf Club)
  • 1973 – Tom Taban (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1974 – Alex Okodan (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1975 –  Ramathan Kayamba (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1976 – Sadi Onito (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 1977 – Sadi Onito (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 1978 – Sadi Onito  (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 1979 – 1980 – NOT HELD
  • 1981 – Juma Jaffer (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1982 – Juma Jaffer (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1983 – Sadi Onito (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1984 – John Mucheru (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1985 – Sadi Onito (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 1986 – Sadi Onito (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 1987 – Sadi Onito (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 1988 – Sadi Onito (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 1989 – Allan Njoroge (Muthaiga Golf Club)
  • 1990– Dedan Kagonyera (Kabale Golf Club)
  • 1991 – Sadi Onito (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 1992 – Juma Jaffer (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1993 – John Gavin (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1994 –  Sadi Onito (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 1995 – Sadi Onito (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 1996 – Sadi Onito (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 1997 – Steven Birungi (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1998 – Steven Birungi (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 1999 – Steven Birungi (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 2000 – Deo Akope (Entebbe Golf Club)
  • 2001 – Deo Akope (Entebbe Golf Club)
  • 2002 – Deo Akope (Entebbe Golf Club)
  • 2003 – Charles Yokwe (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 2004 – David Odhiambo (Nyanza Golf Club)
  • 2005 – Charles Yokwe (Jinja Golf Club)
  • 2006 – Amos Kamya (Entebbe Golf Club)
  • 2007 – Nicholas Rokoine (Muthaiga Golf Club)
  • 2008 – George Olayo (Entebbe Golf Club)
  • 2009 – Peter Ssendaula (Entebbe Golf Club)
  • 2010 – Brian Mwesigwa (Kabale Golf Club)
  • 2011 –Rogers Byaruhanga (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 2012 – Phillip Kasozi (Uganda Golf Club)
  • 2013 – Peter Ssendaula (Entebbe Golf Club)
  • 2014 – Willy Deus Kitata (Entebbe Golf Club)
  • 2015 – Ronald Otile (Tooro Golf Club)
  • 2016 – Ronald Otile (Tooro Golf Club)
  • – Ronald Rugumayo (Tooro Golf Club)
  • –  Ronald Otile (Tooro Golf Club)
  • – Daniel Nduva

Professionals:

  • 2006 – Deo Akope (Ugandan)
  • 2007 – Dismas Ndiza (Kenyan)
  • 2008 – Dismas Ndiza (Kenyan)
  • 2009 – Richard Ainley (Kenyan)
  • 2010 – Dismus Ndiza (Kenyan)
  • 2011 – Dismus Ndiza (Kenyan)
  • 2012 – Dismus Ndiza (Kenyan)
  • 2013 – Vicent Byamukama (Uganda)
  • 2014 – Deo Akope (Uganda)
  • 2015 – Madalisto Muthiya (Zambia)
  • 2016 – Joshua Seale (South Africa)
  • 2017 – Stephen Ferriera (Portugal)
  • 2018 – Dismas Indiza (Kenya)
  • 2019 – Madalisto Muthiya (Zambia)

Ladies:

  • 2019: Martha Babirye (Uganda)
  • 2018: Neema Olomi (Tanzania)
  • 2017: Angel Eaton (Tanzania)
  • 2016: Flavia Namakula (Uganda)
  • 2015:  Flavia Namakula (Uganda)
  • 2014: Flavia Namakula (Uganda)
  • 2013: Angel Eaton (Tanzania)
  • 2012: Angel Eaton (Tanzania)
  • 2011: Flavia Namakula (Uganda)
  • 2010: Flavia Namakula (Uganda)
  • 2009: Jasper Kamukama (Uganda)
  • 2008: Melissa Nawa (Zambia)
  • 2007: Mary Karano (Kenya)

David Isabirye is a senior staff writer for Kawowo Sports where he covers most of the major events.

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