Barclays Bank of Kenya will next week host celebrated Barclays Premier League and African football legend, Jay Jay Okocha for the 49th edition of the Barclays Kenya Open Golf Tournament. The Nigerian legend, best known for his skills on the football pitch, will be swapping his boots for clubs to play at the Barclays Pro-Am which will take place on Wednesday 22nd March 2017 at the Muthaiga Golf Club.

The Pro-Am, which has traditionally acted as the curtain raiser to the Open, is aimed at giving Kenyan amateurs an opportunity to play with, and learn from, the best in the sport from all over the globe. This year’s Barclays Kenya Open tees off on Thursday, the 23rd of March and culminates on Sunday, the 26th of March.

“We are excited to be hosting Jay Jay Okocha at this year’s Barclays Kenya Open. His legendary status transcends football and we hope that his participation in this tournament will excite a section of his fan base to take an interest in golf,” said Caroline Ndungu, Director, Marketing and Corporate Relations, Barclays bank of Kenya.

156 golfers drawn from across the globe will battle it out for a total prize money of 220,000 Euros with the winner taking home 32,000 Euros. Kenya will be represented by a contingent of 22 professionals and 4 amateurs. Kenya’s hopes are being carried by among others, Stefan Anderson, Greg Snow, Dismas Indiza and Brian Njoroge.

Barclays first sponsored the tournament in 2011 to mark its 95th anniversary and then became title sponsor a year later in a 4 year deal. This year’s sponsorship is part of a 3 year extension that was made by the bank last year as part of its centennial celebrations making Barclays one of the tournament’s longest running title sponsors.

“For the last 100 years, we have been an integral part of the Kenyan social and economic fabric, contributing to multiple aspects of this country’s development. As such, our legacy is greatly intertwined with Kenya’s rich heritage and, by the same token, our future is interwoven with that of Kenya. This understanding, that when Kenya prospers, we also prosper, is the foundation of our Shared Growth Agenda upon which our sponsorship of the Barclays Kenya Open is anchored,” she added.

Besides golf, Jay Jay will share career tips with university students under the Barclays ReadytoWork programme and get to interact with customers during his stay. He lands on the 21st for a five day visit.

About Jay Jay Okocha
Jay Jay’s football career spans over 20 years and he was part of the squad that won the African Cup of Nations. He played for the Nigerian team that won the gold medal at the 1996 Olympic Games and was a bright spot in the World Cup in France in 1998 playing midfield for Nigeria’s Super Eagles. His honors include;
• BBC African footballer of the year - 2004 & 2005
• Bolton wonderer footballer of the year – 2005
• Nigerian footballer of the year – 1995, 1997, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005.
• 2004 – African nation’s cup player of the tournament and joint golden boot winner

About the Barclays Kenya Open golf tournament
The Barclays Kenya Open is a golf tournament that was founded in 1967 and has been an event on the European based Challenge Tour schedule since 1991. It was held at the Muthaiga Golf Club near Nairobi every year except in 1968, 2004–2008 and since 2013 when it was held at the Karen Country Club. The tournament attracts an average of 9,000 people annually and the plan this year is to deliver a deliberate demystification campaign in order to drive more interest in the game.

The Tournament attracts elite golfers from all over the world and is currently the second oldest event under the PGA European Challenge Tour. The Barclays Kenya Open title has been won by some of Europe’s biggest Ryder Cup stars such as Seve Ballesteros, Ian Woosnam, Ken Brown and Christy O’Connor Jr, as well as future Masters Champion Trevor Immelman. The most successful player is England’s Maurice Bembridge, who recorded three victories between 1968 and 1979.

For further information about The Kenya Open, please visit the website

About Barclays Bank of Kenya
Barclays Bank of Kenya is one of Kenya’s leading financial institutions. Established in 1916, Barclays has been a major player in Kenya’s financial landscape engaged in personal banking, Enterprise, credit cards, corporate and bancassurance. The bank offers end to end financial solutions to retail, enterprise and corporate customers and its regional and global footprint enables it to offer cutting edge financial solutions to its clients. The bank is a leader in the credit card space. It has also been associated with a number of market firsts including the launch of the first ATM, Sharia Banking and unsecured lending. The bank has presence in 38 counties. It has 121 branches, 229 ATMs and a robust Internet and Mobile banking platform. The bank’s purpose is to help people achieve their ambitions – in the right way.

For further information about Barclays, please visit our website

About Muthaiga Golf Club
Muthaiga Golf Club, proudly called the Home of Golf, is in many ways the ultimate embodiment of Kenya’s unique marriage of ancient golf tradition and a modern 18 hole championship golf course. The club has undergone a rebirth as one of the most prestigious and challenging courses in the region following an extensive course reconstruction by the celebrated South African course designer Peter Matkovich, which in 2004 returned Muthaiga to prominence as the finest course with the fastest greens in East Africa.Winding through the lush woodlands of Karura Forest, Muthaiga Golf Club offers a great ambiance with numerous lakes and ponds.