Golf Championships to tee off
Ian Stevenson, Manager Sponsorships and Events at NBL expressed his delight with the fact that the first round had been a great success and subsequently expanded to include more African countries. “Although I cannot officially confirm that the following countries will definitely participate, all indications are there that they will sign on next week. They are: Kenya, Seychelles, Swaziland, Tanzania and Uganda. These are all countries where Windhoek Lager has distribution channels and this will then bring the participating countries to 10 for this year’s championship,” said Stevenson.
Stevenson continued to say that some people had said at the inaugural launch that this was a bold venture and that it would be difficult to pull off, but despite this, a very successful championship in these 5 countries culminated in a final play-off in Namibia from 12-14 June 2014. “The objective of the Windhoek Lager Africa Jacket Golf Championship was to drive more players to participate in existing golf competitions in each country and by virtue of the fact that in some of these competitions, the local unions had to place a cut-off number of entries, this objective was truly realized,” he added.
Hugh Mortimer, General Manager, Windhoek Golf and Country Club in his address said that the tournament had reached the corners of Africa and the interest in participation was extraordinary while the enquiries from African countries were overwhelming. “From a golfing prospective from both the Namibian Amateur Golf Union and the African Golf Federation we can only thank the Namibia Breweries and especially Ian Stevenson for the initiative.
This tournament will become without doubt a major Amateur Tournament on the African Golf calendar similar to the existing All Africa & Zone V1 tournaments. It is this kind of tournament that every golfer will aspire to take part in.
We all aspire to reduce our handicaps but now we have something else to aim for.
The development of golf from grass roots level to professional golf is a critical focus for all golfing nations in the world. This is exactly why the Windhoek Lager Africa Jacket Tournament was conceptualized, to develop golf for all.”
Mortimer added that the popularity of Golf had increased dramatically over the past few years thanks to media coverage and in particular television but the popularity had not necessarily increased the numbers of people playing the sport. “In fact the numbers are reducing rather disappointingly.
This is mainly due to the cost, the availability of facilities and the tremendous growth in other sports, in particular cycling.
This is not a phenomena only in Africa but throughout the world. Reduced numbers are being reported from everywhere including America and Europe. It is with this in mind that we as the administrators need to encourage, through coaching and making facilities available, our learners and juniors to take a positive interest in the sport particularly here in Africa.”