Adel Balala after winning at the Coast Open. [Maarufu Mohamed, Standard]

It was a day of celebrations in Mombasa after Kenya’s top amateur golfer Adel Balala won the Barry Cup after five years of near misses.

Players from Mombasa had failed to win the coveted trophy in those futile attempts.

The home golfer emerged the overall winner in the 2021 Coast Open Golf Championship that ended at the par 71 Sea-Link Mombasa Golf Course on Sunday evening.

The 22-year-old Balala from Nyali Golf and Country Club carded 144 gross to claim the victory amid wide celebrations from his family, friends, fellow golfers and members of the club.

He had started off with a two over par 73gross for a second place on Saturday before pulling off with a level par 71 gross on Sunday to emerge tops on the leader board.

Balala, who is the top-ranked amateur golfer in Kenya and seventh in Africa, becomes the 101st winner of the historical Barry Cup.

“I am humbled to win the event and bring back the Cup. I have tried but did not play to my full capacity. I will continue practicing as I focus my attention to International Amateurs. Many thanks to the organisers, sponsors, playing partners and family for their support,” said Balala.

He won narrowly against John Lerma of Kenya Railways, who was second with 145 gross (74-71) while Ndumberi’s Captain Michael Karanga tied third with Nyali’s Gurbux Singh after closing the day with a total of 149 gross.

The tournament was jointly sponsored by Kenya Ports Authority, ABSA, Empire Kenya and Kericho Gold.

 

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