Entebbe Golf Club Review

Entebbe GC: ClubhouseEntebbe Golf Club in Uganda


June 23rd, 2012 01:09


First Name Stuart
Last Name Ritchie
Handicap 13

Course Review and Comments

Entebbe is regarded as one of the better tracks in east Africa. It certainly rates highly in Uganda, vying with the Kampala course for No1 status.
I've played the course pretty regularly through the last couple of years (since September 2010) and it's an enjoyable test for me (a 13 handicapper).
The 1st hole, a 546 yard par 5, really needs you to be in full swing right from the start. At Entebbe there's none of your 'easy drive and a short iron to help you get in the groove' at the 1st. Your initial drive should aim for the left side of the fairway. Anything right of centre will bounce down towards the tree plantation that skirts the 1st fairway. But a good drive, followed by a good 3 wood (beware the bunker straddling the fairway), and a shortish iron should see you on the green.
The 2nd, a 182 yard par 3, has a tricky tee shot that must rise swiftly over the large tree right in front of you. Short or left of the green, you're bunkered; and the green slopes from right to left. All in all, nothing straightforward about the 2nd. The 3rd is the downhill hole which, as a 399 yard par 4, requires only a straight drive and a short iron. So let's award ourselves the possibility of a birdie, but don't go left or your ball will be out of bounds with the rhinoceros et al in the adjoining Entebbe zoo.
As you saunter down the 3rd you will, more likely than not, attract an audience of monkeys who regularly enjoy an outing on the course. The 4th (396 yards par 4) is the gentle uphill return but the dogleg left, guarded by trees encroaching into the middle of the fairway just beyond the corner, makes this one of the trickiest holes on the course. You must hit a good long drive up the right half of the fairway over the cross bunker which will catch anything less than perfect. Thereafter, your shot to the green will more often than not require height to clear the encroaching trees to land on the back-to-front, right-to-left sloping green. If you've played the first four holes in one over par you will be quite satisfied with your start (well actually I would be delighted).
The next three holes offer a little respite. The 434 yard par 4 5th requires a drive that avoids the large tree in the right-centre of the fairway then a mid-iron to a flat green. The slightly uphill 150 yard par 3 6th is stroke index 18'..enough said. The 7th, a slight dogleg left is the longest hole on the course. It's a 577 yard par 5 with a left-to-right sloping green that just needs a good drive avoiding the trees on the left, a good 3 wood avoiding the plantation on the right and a short iron to the green. So three straightforward pars? Well maybe! Let's allow for one carelessly-dropped shot over these three holes. You'll probably accept a bogey at 8 or 9 to reach the turn in three over par. The 212 yard par 3 8th is no pushover. Aiming for the left and high side of the green, you need a long and high tee shot to carry the big tree in front before bouncing and rolling down to the steeply-sloping green. A less than perfect tee shot will see you in trouble with trees on the left or with a large bunker and horrible scrubby rough down on the right. The 447 yard par 4 9th really requires distance with your drive and probably with the 3 wood to follow. Nothing unusually difficult about the hole barring bunkers right and left to catch wayward drives and the long second shots to the green. Into a breeze, length is a significant problem, and you're probably looking at a chip and putt to save par. But you've made it to the turn and you're out in 38 only three over. Possibilities to claw that back? Well maybe, but certainly not immediately.
With a couple of large trees protecting the left half of the green, the 10th, a 210 yard par 3, requires an accurate tee shot just to the right of said trees. Anything further right is in amongst the trees and scrub separating the 10th from the 18th fairway. A bogey at 10 is not unacceptable. But the 543 yard par 5 11th offers the possibility of a recovering birdie with a good drive that avoids bunkers right and left, a good three wood and a blind but not difficult pitch to the green. If you're short with your tee shot at the 161 yard par 3 12th you'll be in serious bunker trouble with two connected sand traps the size of the Sahara. But you should make par. Still three over after twelve. (I wish!)
The only short par 4s are next. The 13th at 359 yards and the 14th at 313 yards offer birdie opportunities. The small upturned saucer of the 13th green is its only protection, while the dogleg 14th needs an accurate drive down the right hand side of the fairway to give a clear approach to the green for your 9 iron or wedge. The 497 yard par 5 15 runs alongside a road on the left so don't go there. The fairway slopes down to a plantation on the right, so don't go there. But it's a broad fairway, and a good drive, a solid three wood and a short iron will give you a birdie opportunity. A mixture of good play and good fortune will give you two birdies out of these three holes, taking you to one over par after 15. But, I'm afraid that's your lot.
The closing three holes at Entebbe are a tough test, just when the heat has begun to get to you and you've begun to contemplate a well-chilled Nile Special in the clubhouse. The 226 yard par 3 16th is protected by its length (a driver for me) and crescent-shaped bunkers that welcome a fading tee shot. But par should be achieved one way or the other. At 473 yards, the dogleg par 4 17th needs two very good long woods and then some. Dropping a shot at 17 is no embarrassment. Finally, the 559 yard par 5 18th gives you a really good finishing hole which you're happy to par with a couple of good long woods and a short iron to the green. Just don't let your shot to the green fall off to the right because the cement base of a yet-to-be-filled pond encroaches almost up to the green (and is out of bounds). So you have picked up a shot on the inward half with a total of 35 and a grand total of 73, two over par.
You should be well pleased. Me, I'd be over the moon!


Date course was played Sunday 10th of June 2012
Price paid for golf 50
Price comments
Course Design Rating
Course Design Comments A good selection of 18 holes makes excellent use of what might be termed 'rolling parkland', with gentle, and never taxing, undulations, and broad tree-lined fairways. There are four doglegs, but really only one hole that could be termed 'downhill' with a gentle 'uphill' return. I guess the thing that struck me most was the length of the course. Par is 71, but it plays all of its 6684 yards with some long par 5s and two par 4s that measure 447 and 473 yards.
Course Greens/Fairways Condition Rating
Course Greens/Fairways Condition Comments I'm afraid I could never describe the tees, fairways, bunkers and greens as being 'immaculate' or 'manicured' - this is Uganda! But they're good enough for real golfers who are far from Scotland and who don't need a perfectly manicured setting in which to swing a club.
Course Service Rating
Course Service Comments
Course Facilities Rating
Course Facilities Comments
Course Overall Rating
Play Again Yes
Recommend Yes

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