The Kenyan Government has imposed the strictest criteria for health and safety measures
The Kenya Open Golf Limited and the European Tour has now set the new date for the The Magical Kenya Open Tournament - originally scheduled to take place from March 12-15 – now postponed to November 12-15 with restrictions imposed by the Kenyan government due to Covid-19.
Magical Kenya Open - to be hosted at the Karen Country Club - will have a field of 144 players, with 12 drawn from the 2019-2020 Safari Tour as well as six amateur golfers selected by the Kenya Golf Union to compete for a prize purse of €1 million.
The Kenya Open Golf Limited said in a statement, “The rescheduled Magical Kenya Open is part of the European Tour’s reshaped 2020 schedule, with all tournaments subject to the Tour’s stringent medical health strategy which will evolve in line with government guidance in the countries the Tour visits,”
Peter Kanyago, Kenya Open Golf Limited chairman, said that the event will be televised live globally also giving Kenya’s tourism industry the boost it requires to start rebuilding after the devastation caused by the pandemic.
“The Kenya Open has been connected with the European Tour since the mid-1970s. We held the first designated full European Tour title event last year and we were all happy with the success. We would like to keep the momentum going by hosting the second European Tour event this year,” Kanyago said.
The European Tour restarted earlier this week with a number of health and safety regulations to ensure a safe return to golf, such as needing a negative PCR test before travelling to the tournament, an additional test on arrival, daily symptom questionnaires and temperature checks, social distancing and an improved standard of hygiene.
European Tour Chief Medical Officer Dr. Andrew Murray told the organization’s media that the process players, caddies and staff members will now have to go through at each tournament is ‘some of the strictest screening and testing criteria on earth’.
Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta had previously called upon the country's lawmakers to ban sports’ betting in the country and has now signed the Amendment of the finance bill 2020 lifting the 20 percent excise tax imposed on betting companies in the next six months. The dismissal of the excise duty tax has coincided with restructuring of ownership at SportsPesa raising speculation about the company’s return.
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