Kampala. When he carded one-under-par 71 after his opening round on Wednesday, Brian Mwesigwa quickly found the exit at the Uganda Golf Club (UGC) in Kitante.
He only got to know through a phone call that his shift was not just average as he finished joint-third with country-mate Phillip Kasozi, two strokes behind leaders Dismas Indiza and Deo Akope.
But the 2010 Uganda Amateur Open winner Mwesigwa seems to be on a roll. Yesterday, he could afford to glance at the leaderboard at the clubhouse after he had maintained his position.
“It was okay but I kept dropping shots,” Mwesigwa would say after returning one-over-par 73 to tally level overall after two days. After Akope and Kasozi failed to keep the momentum, Mwesigwa is now the country’s flag bearer heading into Day Three codenamed ‘Moving Friday’ at par-72 course today. “I hope to play the way I am playing. I can’t force anything,” said the amiable golfer who made up for four bogeys and a double-bogey with an eagle on the par-5 Hole No.5 and birdies on par-5 No.5, par-3 No.9 and par-4 No.14.
Mwesigwa leads the 15-man list of the local pros who made the cut. He is followed by two-time winner Akope and Lake Victoria Serena Hotel Kigo-sponsored Fred Wanzala, who are tied in eighth, on two-over.
But it is neighbours Kenya who have 19 players through with Indiza still atop after returning 71 to go four-under overall. “I am a serious golfer here. This is like my course. We wait and see what happens tomorrow because the course is changing.” said Indiza after picking five birdies (1, 3, 8, 13 and 18) only bogged down by a double-bogey on par-4 No.10 and two other bogeys.
Four-time champion Indiza must, however, keep watch of Portuguese Stephen Ferreira, who moved three places up after scoring one-under for the same overall score in second place. He carded 76 in Pro-Am and 72 on Day One. “I hope I can keep improving,” said Ferreira. “Definitely, I am chasing the championship.”
“I don’t want to be too far. There are still two rounds to play.”
At least 46 professionals missed out on the cut including the only female player in the fray Flavia Namakula of Uganda who finished with an aggregate of 159 gross over two days.
Day two leaders
Dismas Indiza (KEN) 69 71 140
Stephen Ferreira (POR) 72 71 143
Anil Shah (KEN) 74 70 144
Brian Mwesigwa (UGA) 71 73 144
T. Charamba (ZIM) 75 70 145
David Wakhu (KEN) 74 71 145
Aaron Simfukwe (ZAM) 74 71 145
Fred Wanzala (UGA) 75 71 146
Deo Akope (UGA) 69 77 146
M. Omondi (KEN) 75 72 147