By Duncan Mlanjira, Maravi Express & Moses Nyirenda, MANA
In order to motivate the Malawian professional golfers participating in the SeedCo Lilongwe Open that tees off Friday, SAWA Group Ltd has offered a K1 million purse as an incentive to the top 5 best finishes.
Announcing the sponsorship, Sawa Group Director, Shueb said the company decided to offer the additional cash for the local pros to the flag high.
This is on top of the cash purse of US$5,000 that the main sponsor SeedCo Malawi has offered to the professional category that tees off from 11am with a combined field of pros and amateurs in Champion Division in a stroke-play format.
Day 2 and 3 on Saturday and Sunday will have the pros, Championship as well as Division A & B.
Meanwhile, SeedCo Malawi’s Commercial Director, Gift Kawamba said everything is in place for the tournament that is expected to attract a field of about 30 pros from Malawi and neighbouring Zambia, Zimbabwe and Tanzania.
“Seed-Co is very prepared for this tournament and it is a pleasure to us to have an opportunity to sponsor such an event.
“As you are aware, we sponsor the event every year before rainy season starts in order to interact with our stakeholders, farmers, customers and other people who make decisions in the agriculture sector,” Kawamba said.
He added that they have invited foreign professional golfers to participate in the tournament as one way of spicing up the event as well as giving local golfers a platform where they can learn new golf techniques.
“As SeedCo, we believe that for people to perform well they need to compete against the best and that is why we thought it as a good idea bringing in golf professionals from outside the country.
“Among the foreign players we have invited is one professional golfer, who is former champion of the Sunshine Tour [Irvin Mazibuko] so that through his high skills we want him to impart the same to our local golfers,” he said.
Professional Golfers Association of Malawi (PGMW) president, General Henry Odillo, Rtd applauded SeedCo for sponsoring such a big tournament.
“For a long time, the local players had been starved of playing professional tournament due to the COVID-19 pandemic — hence our appreciation to SeedCo coming forward to sponsor once more,” Odillo said.
Malawian pros set to compete for honoured are Chris Mzokomera; Simon Moses; James Shonga (all Blantyre Sports Club); Rashid Salim (Country Club Limbe) and seven from the hosts Lilongwe Golf Club — Patridge Shycal; Paul Chidale; Victor Kachepatsonga; Adam Sailesi; Cosmas Mweniwawo; Gabriel Kambalame and Kenan Paul.
The foreign pros from Zambia are Morton Muwowo (Nkana Golf Club); Mwalikwa Sondashi (Chibuluma/Nkana) and Aaron Musonda (Chinama Golf Club while amateurs are Sydney Wemba Jnr (Lusaka Golf Club); Sondashi Mwalikwa (Kalulushi Golf Club); Aaron Musonda (Chainama Hills Golf Club) and Patrick Mwendapole (Chilanga Golf Club).
Pros from Zimbabwe are Tonderayi Masunga (Wingate Golf Club); Mketekete Ignatius (ZPGA); Liberty Gumisa (Gweru Golf Club); Howard Bauti and Pride Sembo (both Chapman Golf Club).
Their amateurs are David Stobbelaar; Chinhoi Robson (Royal Harare); Nevy Milazi (Falcon 1464) and Jealous Nguringa (Borrowdale Brooke).
SeedCo is a leading supplier of superior crop seeds of maize hybrid, soya beans, groundnuts, sugar beans and vegetables in Malawi and the Southern Africa.
Vice-captain for Lilongwe Golf Club, Duncan Chidzankufa said the golf course is in very good shape and they are all set to make an excellent impression.
This is a second year running of the SeedCo Lilongwe Open which was complemented last year by the club’s other business partners such as NBS Bank, Standard Bank, NICO, Toyota Malawi, FDH Bank amongst others.