Dis­trict golf league way to go for sport

Business Daily (Kenya) - - THE WEEKENDER - CHARLES GACHERU

Over the past few years, the Nairobi Dis­trict Golf League has con­tin­ued to grow in stature. The teams have duly branded them­selves, fol­low­ing in the foot­steps of the Limuru War­riors, who named them­selves first and many years ago. In­deed the suc­cess of the Nairobi Dis­trict League is some­thing the Kenya Golf Union (KGU) and club Cap­tains should re­search and use to im­prove the KGU Golfer of the Year events that have con­tin­ued to de­cline in stature. But that is a story for an­other day.

To strengthen the league, Golf Park and Ruiru were in­cluded and in its first few sea­sons, Golf Park en­joyed ‘school­ing’ the big­ger boys, es­pe­cially at their chal­leng­ing home course. Re­cently, Golf Park have found them­selves on the wrong end of the ‘school­ing’. Ruiru on their part have con­tin­ued to im­press, and although they re­main at the bot­tom of the league ta­ble, they have earned a lot of re­spect from the big boys.

All in all the league has grown and fos­tered com­rade­ship among the golfers, im­prov­ing the stan­dards of match play golf in Nairobi and pre­par­ing our elite am­a­teur golfers for na­tional duty.

How­ever, the league is not with­out its con­tro­versy. For ex­am­ple, it is played on Sun­day morn­ings and it is not clear why this day was ad­vanced.

In the same light, ladies medals were played on Tues­day morn­ings. These were mainly played by ex­pa­tri­ate wives in the early days of the game.

And de­spite the chang­ing lady golf­ing land­scape, many of these medals in the ma­jor clubs are still played on Tues­day morn­ings – ef­fec­tively lock­ing out the mod­ern work­ing lady golfers (and you won­der why the game is not grow­ing!)

The Nairobi Dis­trict League Matches 2017 Rules and Con­di­tions were re­vised in Jan­uary 2017 and as the league draws to a close, they have be­come sub­ject to dis­cus­sion af­ter the Rail­way GC vs Wind­sor league match aborted sev­eral times. Rail­way are the league de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons, and are cur­rently sec­ond on the ta­ble with 136.59 points be­hind lead­ers Vet Lab with 147.33 points and Thika with 143 points. Rail­way have a game in hand, against Wind­sor at home, and the 11 points they need to win the league are as good as given. You can now see why Vet Lab would be adamant for Wind­sor to get all the 22 points or the Rail­way vs Wind­sor match not played at all.

In March, Rail­way sent the draw to Wind­sor ahead of the dead­line as stip­u­lated in Rule 6. Wind­sor claim they did not re­ceive this draw, yet ac­cord­ing to email trails made avail­able to me, the draw was not only re­ceived at Wind­sor, but shared to other Wind­sor re­lated emails. The match was not held. Fol­low­ing dis­cus­sions be­tween the two clubs and the Cap­tains Com­mit­tee the match was post­poned and Rail­way duly sent in an­other draw on Au­gust 25, again, well within Rule 6; Wind­sor de­clined to play say­ing they had not agreed to this fixture.

Ac­cord­ing to Rule 7, teams that fail to hon­our fix­tures for­feit all 22 points, and at some point within this email ex­changes Rail­way, who are the 2017 league con­ven­ers awarded them­selves the 22 points against Wind­sor. This de­ci­sion was nul­li­fied by the Cap­tains Com­mit­tee who have now asked that the match be played on Septem­ber 17.

How­ever, there is a twist, the rules in­di­cate that, “The last date for league matches for 2017 will be Septem­ber 10. Matches played af­ter this date will not be con­sid­ered to­wards the monthly point stand­ing.”

Was the Cap­tains Com­mit­tee right in amend­ing their own rules? Ac­cord­ing to golf rules afi­cionado, SK Mwaura, the Golf Cap­tains Com­mit­tee is well within their rights to do so. “Reschedul­ing the day or time of a match or a com­pe­ti­tion ei­ther in its en­tirety or par­tially does not con­sti­tute changes to the con­di­tions as an­tic­i­pated by the R&A.”

Will Wind­sor show up at Rail­way on Septem­ber 17 ? I have my doubts and in­deed if they show up, it will be with an un­mo­ti­vated small team. In the mean­while, Rail­way will be charged and will line up 100 odd mem­bers, all will­ing to make Wind­sor eat lo­co­mo­tive dust!

Given the nyama choma (roasted beef ), mu­ratina (tra­di­tional brew) and mu­tura (tra­di­tional sausage) that is likely to flow at Rail­way I in­tend to be present to par­take!

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