Jul 29, 2008, 11:52 AM
Fa Kebba Drammeh, alias Gambian Tiger Woods, has expressed his intention to take part in the upcoming Euro Pro Tourbilled to take place next month (March 27) and the US Open qualify round to be held later this year, if everything goes well.
Fa Kebba, who was speaking to reporters shortly after being crowned champion in the professional golfer’s category of the Qatar Cup held at the weekend at the Fajara Golf Course, added that his biggest preparation at the moment is for the Euro Pro Tour.
“The fitness is there, the game is there but any time we say ‘if everything goes well’, especially us the professional golfers, it is about sponsorship,” he said.
He personally goes around trying to do his best, with the help of some of his club members, to raise finance, he said, adding that where there is a will there is a way, and nothing would stop him from playing where he intends to “but if there are more sponsors then you can play in bigger tournaments, which helps you as a professional golfer to be able to get yourself into a competitive mood all year round”.
Tiger, as he is widely known, expressed delight about his score and the way he played in that tournament, really distancing himself from the rest of the professionals with his score.
He said that is probable one of the best sponsored tournaments of the year, adding: “We have had some really big tournaments which are international but for a sponsored tournament like this for local professional golfers is unbelievable.”
He therefore thanked the Qatar Ambassador to The Gambia on behalf of all professional golfers, saying they were pleased all professionals came out and really did their best during the tournament.
“It is just unfortunate that some had to walk away with nothing in their pockets but credit to all professional golfers,” he pointed out, saying all professional golfers were pleased from the beginning to the end of the tourney.
“You cannot go along with the cash that has been put for the professional golfers,” he said, noting that all the prizes given to professionals and amateurs were very good, and therefore thanked the Qatar Ambassador.
Asked about his plan in helping The Gambia get a lot of young professional golfers, he said: “The first thing would be my voice - give it out to the media, and the overall is whatever knowledge we have we try to share it with the grassroots because the grassroots is everything,”
Dodou Kassama, who finished second in the professional category, described the competition as a ‘big tournament’, adding that they all fought hard but eventually Fa Kebba Drammeh emerged as winner at the end.
“Everyone was out there to give your best but in every tournament there must be a winner and we all appreciate that Fa Kebba emerged winner,” he pointed out, saying they just need to work harder to beat him next time around.
Asked why Fa Kebba Drammeh is always taking first position, he said: “It is golf and he is at the top of his game at the moment, but we are also working hard on our game and hopefully next tournament you will see a different winner.”
He also said: “It is difficult in The Gambia as golf professional because there are few or no sponsors on your way to play tournaments locally or internationally, but we hope to see more sponsored tournaments in 2014.”
Kassama, who has had the chance to travel to Senegal on several occasions to take part in international golf competitions, said the first time he had the opportunity to travel outside the Senegambia region was in November when he travelled to Sierra Leone to take part in an international golf tournament where he missed out on two shots.
“That was an experience; that is what we need as professional golfers,” he remarked, adding: “In golf you need to be exposed to playing in all kinds of conditions, heat, playing with different players; that gives you experience for big tournaments.
“If you are not used to playing in such atmosphere it is always difficult for you as a professional in big competitions.”
He said his participation in Sierra Leone had enhanced his experienced the more in the sport, as he learned a lot there.
He said he would continue to work very hard this year to take part in competitions in Ghana and Nigeria, adding that they would also continue to look for sponsorship to be able to take part in upcoming tournaments.