Zimbabwe Golf Association (ZGA) president Martin Chikwana has expressed his delight after getting recognition from the game’s leading governing body the R&A for his association’s efforts in developing the sport of golf in the country and the African continent.
The R&A’s director for golf development Kevin Baker was in attendance at the recent All Africa Amateur Golf Team Championships held in Egypt, where Zimbabwe finished a commendable sixth out of 15 participating nations.
Zimbabwe had the youngest team in the continental competition as part of ZGA’s efforts to develop the sport at grassroots level.
The team was captained by 16-year-old Keegan Shutt, who overcame food poisoning to finish in a tie for sixth position on the individual leaderboard on a good total of seven-under-par-281.
The other members of the team included 18-year-old Clive Muchenje, Munashe Chatora, who is only 15, and 21-year-old Munashe Ndaruza, who also struggled with food poisoning during the week, but fought hard to finish 25th on the individual standings.
At the tournament’s conclusion, Baker presented a token of appreciation to Chikwana in recognition of the golf administrator’s efforts in creating a conducive environment for the sport of golf to thrive in the country.
“Amongst the takeaways from this tournament was that I was given a token of appreciation by Kevin Baker, who is R&A’s golf development director,” Chikwana said in an interview with ZimSportLive.
“This was in appreciation of the work we are doing both in Zimbabwe in Africa so it was quite a significant token of appreciation coming from a world-renowned body.”
The R&A is the ruling authority of golf throughout the world except in North America; the USGA is the ruling authority of golf in the United States and Mexico, while Canada uses the rules of the R&A in addition to the USGA rules.
It works in collaboration with national amateur and professional golf organisations in more than 110 countries.
The recognition by R&A comes after Chikwana was elected the vice-president of the Africa Golf Confederation during the body’s elective general meeting held at the El Gouna Golf Club in Egypt.
Chikwana will serve as one of the two deputies to Ugandan Johnson Umolo, who was elevated to the position of president, having served as the vice-president for the past four years.
The Bulawayo-based businessman and golf administrator becomes the second Zimbabwean to hold the post of Africa Golf Confederation vice-president recently after another veteran local golf administrator Obed Dube.