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Ziana triumphs in JGF tour at Karen


Zianna Kodha overcame stiff opposition to win the Junior Golf Foundation Series leg at Karen Country and Golf Club.

A three way play off was held so as to decide the winner of the girls 9-10 years old.

At the end of regular play, three girls, Ashley Gachora, Zianna Kodha, and Aria Dodhia were tied with a score of seven over par 43.

 In the first playoff at hole number ten, Ashley Gachora was the first casualty as she played one stroke more than Zianna and Aria. At hole 11, both Aria and Zianna landed in the bunker on their second shots. There was no separating the two who are best friends, as they still tied after the second playoff hole with Zianna winning on countback. Zianna  had just landed in the country in the morning and went straight to play at Karen.

“I was nervous and scared of what’s going to happen. But I kept telling myself if anything happens, I should feel proud of myself and proud of my best friend (Aria) because we both tried hard to get there; we suffered and we enjoyed it,” said the winner, Zianna Khoda.

 For Aria Dodhia, tied for second place with Ashley Gachora was more than she bargained for at Karen.

“It was entertaining and very exciting. It made me a little bit nervous and I felt happy and sad at the end. I was happy because I made it to the playoffs and sad because I missed a very important putt (to win the playoff),” she explained.

 Despite the rainy conditions, Adam Nesbitt was in a class of his own in the boys 11 years old category, winning by a clear five strokes.

Adam finished with a score of eight over par 80 with his closest challengers Shuhan Peng and Palash Tank a distant second with a score of 13 over par 85.

“Today was quite hard because of the rains and the bad weather. My game wasn’t that good, my putting let me down especially, but everything else was fine. You just need to get very equipped for the rain, know how to play in those bad conditions, and also keep practicing in those conditions to get better when it becomes worse,” said Adam.  

 For Yolanda Yu, the day was extra special. She celebrated her 14th birthday by winning the girls 13-14 years category. Her score of fourteen over par 86 was three strokes better than Sophia Nesbitt who was the pre-competition favourite to win this category. Nesbitt tied for second position with Nkini Pasha on 89.


“I was really happy. I told my dad that it is my birthday and I’m going to do something on my special day and I’m going to get number one. And there was no reason for me not to get number one because first, I have new clubs, my dad bought me the other day, it is raining and not hot and I like playing here when it is raining because I got all my energy,” said an excited Yolanda at the end of her competition.

 Other winners of the day were Justin Ngeera in the boys 13-14 years category, and Kimani Gicheru in the boys 15-18 years category. Simaloi Mbeya was the winner in the girls 11-12 years category, with Shanjana Sharma winning the girls 15-18 years category.

 The junior golfers have no time to rest as they move to the Kenya Junior Strokeplay Championship for boys and girls at the Muthaiga Golf Club from the 8th to the 11th of April 2024.



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