Golfer Godfrey Nsubuga emerged winner in the amateur event of the 2023 Johnnie Walker Uganda Open Golf Championship that came to a close on Saturday at Uganda Golf Club in Kampala. The Mehta Golf Club star maintained his lead throughout the tournament and held off a late charge from some of the top talent in the field to secure the win.
Nsubuga who also doubles as a member of Uganda Golf Club maintained his lead throughout the event, subjecting his rivals to the ‘bridesmaids’ role. Hitting 65, 69, 72 and 69 from day one to day four respectively, amassing an overall score of 13-under par 275.
“In the first place I would like to thank God who has enabled me do this because if it wasn’t his will, I wouldn’t have done it…I would like to thank the Mehta family that gave me the opportunity to start playing golf…I would also like to thank the Uganda Golf Union that has been very supportive…,” a grateful Nsubuga said.
Second position went to Ibrahim Bagalana who was four strokes behind Nsubuga while 2021 winner Joseph Cwinya-ai finished third with 4-under par 284. Last year’s runner up, Michael Tumusiime who was in the Saturday’s pressure group finished fourth with 7-over par 295.
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The battle for the title was intense, but Nsubuga remained unruffled and played with a level of consistency that was impressive for a golfer competing in his fourth Uganda Open Golf Championship. Heading into the final round, Nsubuga was only three shots ahead of Bagalana and six shots ahead of Cwinya-ai and the event turned out to be a three-horse race but Nsubuga who led in the opening three rounds defended his lead one last time to emerge champion.
“I always play under par on this course and when I took the lead on day one, many people were hopeful that I’ll take the Uganda Open and I’m thankful that I have won the tournament. The pressure was there in the final day but I stayed cool and finished strong,” Nsubuga who credited his caddy Mufti Musinguzi said adding that; “I have been very positive and the surrounding environment has been very positive. It’s not a surprise that I have played very well like this but I didn’t expect to play those many unders.”
Nsubuga who had a total of 21 birdies and an eagle throughout the event credits his consistency and good putting for an excellent display at the tournament. “I’m really happy about my game. The course has been in good condition and I enjoyed myself here.”
The victory is sure to be a watershed moment in Nsubuga’s career, with many experts predicting that he has a bright future ahead. As golf fans mainly from Mehta Golf Club and Uganda Golf Club celebrate his win, the spotlight will undoubtedly shift to Nsubuga’s next challenge and the possibilities that lie ahead for the young golfer.
Meanwhile, the event that also witnessed a hole in one feat by Conrad Odere attracted 131 entries.
The 2023 Johnnie Walker Uganda Open Golf Championship that started with ladies and later amateurs continues next week with the Pro-Am. The Professional Open that has a UGX 100 Million kitty will cap proceedings.
2023 Johnnie Walker Uganda Open
Amateur Final Leaderboard
- Godfrey Nsubuga (UG) – 275
- Ibrahim Bagalana (UG) – 279
- Joseph Cwinya-ai (UG) – 284
- Michael Tumusiime (UG) – 295
- Joseph Kasozi (UG) – 300
T6. Denis Kabarira (UG) – 302
T6. Morris Ashaba (UG) – 302
T8. Gilbert Asiimwe (UG) – 303
T8. Peter Tumusiime (UG) – 303
T10. Ally Isanzu (TZ) – 305
T10. Hassan Kiyemba (UG) – 305
T10. Joseph Kanolera (UG) – 305