2017 Champion Rai Welcome To Defend Title

Barclays Kenya Open will be glad to host the 2017 champion Aaron Rai should he chose to come back to defend his title at Muthaiga Golf Club.
The Barclays Kenya Open tournament director Patrick Obath told a press briefing at Nakuru Golf Club at the weekend that although the Englishman had qualified to play in the European Tour, he is likely to come back to Kenya because of the increased prize money in this year’s Open.
“He has not done very well so far in the European Tour and with the prize money of Euro500,000 (sh62.5 million), I will not be surprised to see Rai coming back to Muthaiga. He will be more than welcome to play if he chooses to come’’ said Obath.
Patrick Obath revealed that he had received a number of requests from some of the European players who did not do so well in the 2017 Challenge Tour series though he said he is yet to receive a request from players in the main European Tour.
“In the next three weeks or so we should be able to know which players will be coming to Muthaiga. Obath said with an additional of 150,000 Euro the Kenya Open could easily join the European Tour league.
At the same time Obath said the Open will remain at Muthaiga for the next few years and probably go back to Karen until other 18 holes in Nairobi are able to meet the required international standard.
“Right now the Sigona  course is ready though there is still the issue of the driving range which the club management is working on it. Other clubs like Limuru have also been told what to do to attain the required standards’’ added Obath.
However Obath said that if the Open will have to go out of Nairobi, then Nyali Golf and Country Club in Mombasa would be the venue. “Nyali is more than ready and is probably the only club besides Muthaiga and Karen which has been kept in international standard’’.