Italian Lorenzo Gagli scored a dramatic Barclays Kenya Open title in a sudden death play off against Swedish player Jens Fahrbring, as day three leader and 2016 champion Sebastian Soderberg faded away to joint sixth at Muthaiga Golf Club course.
Gagli and Fahrbring had tied on 11 under par 273 at the end of regulation play. Gagli who had started the day in the team behind the leaders, shot 3 under par 68 while the Swedish player Fahrbring posted 4 under par 67 to also finish the tournament on 11 under.
The two hence went for the play off where after tying with pars in the first two holes, Gagli sparred as Fahrbring bogeyed the hole after firing to the water. Gagli won the first prize of 80,000 Euros while Fahrbring was placed in second place with a prize of 55,000 Euros.
The winner had made four birdies and only bogeyed one hole while Fahrbring made five birdies and only one bogey at the 14th hole.
“I am extremely excited winning here, it has been a great event which was well organized. The course was great thanks to the green keeper and his team. It will be even great when the prize money is doubled next year’’ said Gagli after receiving the trophy from President Uhuru Kenyatta who watched a bit of the action in the company of former Prime Minister Raila Odinga and several government officials.
However, round three leader Sebastian Soderberg’s dream of a second Kenya Open title ended in joint sixth on 9 under par 275 after a string of bogeys particularly at the back nine having set off with a two shots lead on minus 12. At the top, Philip Mejow of Germany tied on third with Chile’s Nico Geyger and Finland’s Kalle Samooja.
The surviving Kenyans finished down on 68th and 71st though they went home with extra Sh300,000 which included the bonus of Sh100,000 each from the Kenya Open Golf Limited for making cut and 2000 Us Dollars(Sh200,000) from Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko.