Hakizimana eyeing 2014 Kenya Open tourney
Rwanda’stop professional golfer Jean Baptiste Hakizimana is eyeing the 2014 Barclays Kenya Open scheduled for March 6– 9 at the Nairobi Karen Golf and Country Club.
Speaking candidly to Focus Sports, Hakizimana said, “I’m ready for the Kenyan Open. I started preparing for the competition in December last year and hopefully I will deliver my best because I feel very balanced. I expect to depart for Kenya on February 10 ahead of the tournament as part of earlier preparations to master the greens.”
The tournament which is expected to attract over 150 professional golfers is part of the European Challenge Tour to be held at the 72-par course for the second time in two years after the successful 2013 leg that saw Spaniard Jordi Garcia Pinto claiming his maiden European Challenge Tour title defeating Tim Sluiter by a single point.
Hakizimana who did not take part in last year’s tournament noted that since the invitation is for one professional golfer, efforts are underway to see that confirmation is received for Rwanda’s third pro Ernest Ndayisenga to take part in the competition.
It will be Ndayisenga’s first time to feature in the competition since finishing third in the 2013 Uganda Golf Open in September last year. Emmanuel Ruterana is the only Rwandan golfer who took part in the last year’s event.
Hosts Kenya will be represented by 25 professionals who will be seeking to win the prize money of €200,000 (Rwf 185m). The 2012 Rwanda Serena Mug winner Greg Snow was the highest placed Kenyan finishing 34th.
The Kenya Open which will be in its 23rd year as a Challenge Tour event is Kenya’s most prestigious golf event and the richest in the country, offering an overall prize of €200,000 (about Rwf185m) and €30,400 (about Rwf28m) for the winner.