Sailesi shines in TNM Malawi Open stroke-play

Lilongwe based golfer Adam Sailesi underlined his credentials as Malawi’s top golfer when he won the Championship Division of the 2015 TNM Malawi Open Stroke-play held over the weekend at Lilongwe Golf Club’s 18-hole course.

Champion Sailesi (left) gets his trophy from TNM

Champion Sailesi (left) gets his trophy from TNM

Manda shows off his trophy as Makata cheers on.

Manda shows off his trophy as Makata cheers on.

Runner-up Kachepatsonga (left) gets his prize

Runner-up Kachepatsonga (left) gets his prize

Makata presents K500,000 dummy cheque to Mkandawire

Makata presents K500,000 dummy cheque to Mkandawire

Winners pose for group photo with sponsors

Winners pose for group photo with sponsors

Makata presents K500,000 dummy cheque to Mkandawire

A field of 116 golfers from Lilongwe and other golf clubs across the country took part in the three day stroke-play, which teed-off Friday closing on Sunday afternoon.

At the end of it all, Malawi Zone VI Golf team captain Adam Sailesi, playing handicap one emerged the hero when he won the Championship Division with an impressive gross score of 224. Only golfers from handicap one to eight participated in the elite category with the rest battling it out in the A and B Divisions.

Sailesi attributed his success to the good training he has been receiving in camp ahead of the Uganda Zone VI tournament.

“I have been in camp with my fellow Zone VI golfers from Tuesday to Thursday and by the time this competition started on Friday, I was in excellent shape. I never struggled to win as you can see I was six shots ahead of the runner-up,” said the golfer, who did not forget to thank his sponsor Andrew Baron for supporting him.

Trailing six shots behind the champion was another Zone VI golfer Victor Kachepatsonga, who played handicap two.

Former Zone VI golfer Daniel Phiri was third on gross 233 while George Chisambo completed the top four list with a gross score of 236. Both Phiri and Chisambo played handicap five.

Lilongwe Golf Captain Justice Ken Manda made sure he led by example in A-Division by hitting a gross score of 169 to win the division. His runner-up was Nayarn Kalaria, who survived a play-off against third-placed Colonel Chikunkha-Soko. Harold Lungu was fourth.

Master Mbale emerged victorious in B-Division followed by Mathews Kamanga and Gershom Chima, respectively.

TNM also honoured outstanding junior players with the top prize for the juniors going to Christopher Nzokomera while Aadil Parker and Precious Chitsanzo got the second and third prizes respectively. Having honoured the juniors, the sponsors also honoured Justin Mkandawire with the best senior golfer award.

Former Malawi Defence Force commander General Henry Odillo had the best overall net with his former deputy Lieutenant General John Msonthi Junior monopolising the Longest Drive on holes 9 and 10.

Speaking when presenting prizes, TNM’s Chief Commercial Officer Dan Makata expressed happiness with the large turn-out of golfers.

“As sponsors, we are very happy with the turn-up of about 120 golfers. This is the biggest golf competition, sponsored by the biggest mobile phone company and played on the country’s premier golf course- three big things coming together.

“We are very pleased to sponsor the Malawi Open and will continue making this tournament bigger and bigger. We will continue talking to Malawi Golf Union (Guom) to make this tournament better and better. At TNM, we do not have any plans to stop sponsoring this tournament unless Guom tells us otherwise and all prospective sponsors better keep waiting,” said Makata, drawing applause from the gathering.

The TNM Chief Commercial also hailed management of Lilongwe Golf Club for a wonderful hospitality. He presented a cheque donation of K500,000 to the club for maintenance of the greens.

Guom president Gabriel Kambale was all thanks to TNM for sponsoring the Malawi Open.

“TNM has been a very good partner of golf over the years. Apart from entering into a partnership with Lilongwe Golf Club, TNM is also building the Guom secretariat,” said Kambale.

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