Chinese golfer Wu Ashun was declared the winner of the 53rd edition of the Magical Kenya Open golf championships over the weekend in a ceremony attended by President Uhuru Kenyatta at the Muthaiga Gold Club.
Wu Ashun speaks after winning Sh37 million in Kenya
18-year-old Njoroge Kibugu also impressed President Kenyatta who said the government would sponsor him.
Ashun became the first Chinese player to win the Magical Kenya Open golf championships, as well as the first Asian winner.
The golfer walked away with the Sh37 million prize money and was awarded a trophy by President Kenyatta.
The 36-year-old is regarded as the DP World Tour's most successful Chinese golfer
Wu Ashun’s family; his wife and their 13-week-old baby were watching him play in Nairobi.
"It's a big celebration, I'm so happy with my family here,” he said.
"It's a very, very good feeling today to win a championship. It was very tough today, I played very, very well today and made seven birdies.
"After two rounds I told myself if I can make five under every day on the weekend and finish 15 under, I think I'll have a chance to win the tournament," he added.
President Kenyatta commended the golfing fraternity in the country for developing the spot and ensuring Kenyans from all walks of life embrace the game.
The Head of State assured that the Government will continue supporting the game.
He said the Government has been setting aside close to Sh284 million every year for the last five years towards organizing world-class events such as the Magical Kenya Open golf tournament.
18-year old Kenyan Njoroge Kibugu emerged as the winner in the amateur category.
In recognition of Kibugu’s sterling performance in the tournament, President Kenyatta announced that the young golfer will be sponsored by the government to participate in the Soudal Open golf tournament that will be held in Belgium between May 12 and May 15, 2022.
“We will also support his transition to professional golf. That will include supporting him with his trainers and making sure that we pay for his trainers and also by providing him with a fitted golf kit so that he can now truly join the ranks of the best in the world,” President Kenyatta said.
Speaking at the event, Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed announced that the ministry has come up with a curriculum that will be presented to the Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD) to ensure golf becomes one of the programmes that will run in schools under the name "Golf Mashinani".