HARARE - St John's College student Kieran Vincent emerged as the biggest winner at the Zimbabwe Golf Association (ZGA) awards ceremony held at Warren Hills Golf Club on Friday night.
The banquet, however, lacked colour or glamour expected of local golf’s principal awards ceremony whilst the only incentive accorded to the winners was a certificate and their name engraved on a shield.
Away from the administrative shortcomings, Vincent was over the moon after walking away with the Male Junior Golfer of the Year award ahead of Jack Allard and Justin Kirsten.
He later claimed the Most Improved Male Golfer award to sum up his inspired year.
That recognition came on the back of a great effort which saw the St John’s College student help Zimbabwe’s junior golf team finish 12th at the Toyota Junior Golf World Cup in Japan.
At that tournament, Vincent signed for a final round 72 to finish three under par for the tournament and conclude as Zimbabwe’s highest placed golfer in position 13 out of a field of 60 golfers.
The night also belonged to rising female golfer Danielle Bekker, who won the Female Junior Golfer of the Year ahead of Margaret Nyamukondiwa.
Visitor Mapwanya was a surprise winner of the best Amateur Male Golfer of the Year ahead of exceptional Stuart Krog, who has been dominating both local and regional amateur events.
The Amateur Female Golfer of the Year went to Loice Chingono ahead of other nominees Batsirai Tilowakuti and Alfazema Aulia.
Late Zimbabwe golfing prodigy Lewis Chitengwa (Jnr) was honoured posthumously with the Lifetime Golf Achievement Award along with John Nixon and Harry Oosthuizen.
ZGA awards judges panel committee member Titus Zvomuya said the process of coming up with the winners was transparent in as far as the judges were concerned.
“Our job was to adjudicate on the names we were given. So if any name is missing don’t shoot the adjudicators shoot the stakeholders from the various provinces,” he said.
“Each of the 17 categories had its own criteria. We were not measuring one category against another. The majority of the categories were excellently subscribed with the exception of a two, these being the Special Olympics for the Male and Female Golfer of the Year.
“In some instances the information provided was not full. For example in the Golf Publication of the Year award, for a province to simply say Manica Post, it’s not enough for the judges’ panel. What about Manica Post?
“Give us more details. That information helps us to come up with an objective assessment. In some categories we just got names, no detail whatsoever and we had to come up with information as judges and also use the secretariat to come up with the information.
“All this sometimes comprises, because if we miss out on something then it’s no longer objective. The information must come up from the provincial associations who should be keeping a tracking record.”
The sports administrator added:
“If any of these winners are involved in any misconduct after being given these awards, we will withdraw this accolade. This is a model sport.”
ZGA Awards Winners
Male Junior Golfer of the Year: Kieran Vincent, Female Junior Golfer of the Year: Danielle Bekker, Amateur Male Golfer of the Year: Visitor Mapwanya, Amateur Female Golfer of the Year: Loice Chingono, Golf Development Programme: Mashonaland Junior Golf Development, Most Improved Female Golfer: Emily Jones, Most Improved Male Golfer: Kieran Vincent, Male Professional Golfer of the Year: Tongoona Charamba, Golf Publication of the Year: Staying the Course, Golf Reporter of the Year: Josh Munthali, Golf Achievement Award: Julia Drazdik, Cedric Jonker, Lifetime Golf Achievement Award: Lewis Chitengwa (Muridzo Jnr), John Nixon, Harry Oosthuizen, Corporate Recognition Award: Chaferfly Enterprises, Toyota Zimbabwe, Premier Auto Services, International Golf Ambassador: Tony Johnstone, Golf Publication of the Year: Stay on the Course, Special Olympics Male: Viren Mehta, Special Olympics Female: Tsitsi Maponda.