Voice of Sport

Action hots up in Nakuru, Machakos pleads for return of Cecafa matches after rains subside

Before Harambee Stars took the pitch on Tuesday at Afraha Stadium, for the first time in a long memory, they were promised a Sh 1 million gift by Nakuru County Governor, Kinuthia Mbugua. The Stars duly beat Zanzibar 2-0 to claim their prize


TANZANIA and Burundi take on each other in a Cecafa Challenge Cup Group ‘B’ match at the Afraha Stadium, Nakuru on Wednesday, kick off 4pm.

Both will be trying to avoid defeat so that they can be guaranteed a place in the quarter finals. The other hopeful team for progress are guest team Zambia who face Somalia at 2pm.

Somalia, beaten twice — by Burundi, 2-0, and Tanzania, 1-0 — can only “miraculously” progress if they beat Zambia by a huge score and qualify as one of the two best third-placed teams in pool play.

Earlier on Tuesday, a refreshing large crowd turned up at Nakuru on a day of a rare appearance of the Kenya team Harambee Stars in that city.

Before Harambee Stars took the pitch at the stadium, for the first time in a long memory, they were promised a Sh 1 million gift by Nakuru County Governor, Kinuthia Mbugua.

On a good Afraha pitch — different from the rain hit one at Kenyatta Stadium, Machakos and Nairobi’s Nyayo National Stadium — the Stars duly exploited the Governor’s morale-booster, confidently dispatching Zanzibar 2-0.

In the 2pm kick-off match Ethiopia beat South Sudan 2-0. Ethiopia and Kenya thus went level in Group ‘A’ with completely identical statistics.

A toss of a coin to decide the top team could not be held immediately after the Kenya game in Nakuru since Ethiopia had already left for Nairobi at the end of their early kick-off match. The toss would be done in the course of Wednesday.

Meanwhile, Machakos County wished to have at least another day of football action at the Kenyatta Stadium, after their leaders said the heavy rains that had hit Machakos City had subsided.

They were talking to Cecafa Organising Committee to see whether some coming matches could be brought back to Machakos.

Kenya 2-0 Zanzibar

Attack-minded Kenya midfielder Francis Kahata had the Zanzibar defence back-tracking right from the kick-off and the pressure was too much after just six minutes when they brought down the Thika United man inside the penalty box.

Azam defender Joackins Atudo stepped up to score his second goal of the tournament, from the penalty spot.

Ironically, AFC Leopards striker Allan Wanga had taken over as Harambee skipper from Kahata who was in charge the previous two matches and the Leopards man gave Kenya the second goal in the 61st minute with a fierce 18 metre shot after being fed by Jacob Keli.

Harambee Stars should have scored more in the first half. Wanga had crashed his shot against the woodwork in just two minutes of the start. Keli should also have scored. After stealing possession from a Zanzibar defender shot straight at the ‘keeper.

Zanzibar also had first half chances, one of them when Masoud Ali went over the bar with a free kick given after Atudo had brought down a Zanzibar striker at the edge of the box.

Seleiman Kassim then had perhaps their best opportunity but he hit the side netting after beating the Kenyan defence from the left flank.

In the second half still Kenya were still dominant and Keli missed a good chance in the 47th minute. After receiving a pass from Peter Opiyo, he weaved through the Zanzibar defence before losing the ball.

Noah Wafula was perhaps off colour on the day and was taken off, an effective Clifton Miheso coming on.

Kenya ‘keeper Duncan Ochieng’ was then sent into a frantic save by Masood Omar’s goal-bound shot as the Zanzibaris attempted to bounce back.

Kenya brought on Mungai Kiongera and David King’atua from the bench in the last quarter of an hour by the Zanzibar defence stood firm.

South Sudan 0-2 Ethiopia

Substitutes Yousuf Yassin and a Birul Kalbore struck a goal apiece after the interval, both driving from the edge of the box to beat South Sudan’s custodian Juma Genaro.

The Walya Antelopes were too strong for their opponents in a match they hugely dominated and could have won by a three goal margin.

The South Sudanese gave a good account of themselves more so after the break but could not stand up to the well drilled opposition.

South Sudan on the hand bowed out of the competition without winning a single match in their second appearance in the tournament.

UPCOMING MATCHES:

Wednesday, December 4: Somalia v Zambia, 2pm [Afraha Stadium, Nakuru]

                                                    Tanzania Mainland v Burundi, 4pm [Afraha Stadium, Nakuru]

Thursday, December 5: Rwanda v Eritrea, 2pm [Afraha Stadium, Nakuru]

Uganda v Sudan, 4pm [Afraha Stadium, Nakuru]

CECAFA CHALLENGE CUP 2013

KENYA

November 27 – December 12

NAIROBI, MACHAKOS, NAKURU, MOMBASA, KISUMU

GROUP A GROUP B GROUP C
KENYA* TANZANIA* UGANDA*
ETHIOPIA* ZAMBIA* SUDAN*
ZANZIBAR BURUNDI RWANDA
South SUDAN SOMALIA ERITREA
  • Qualified for quarter finals

Qualification: First two in each Group & best two qualify to Quarter finals

DATE – 2013 NO. TEAMS (final score) GROUP VENUE TIME
Wed 27th Nov 1 Zanzibar 2-1 South Sudan A NYAYO 2.00 PM
2 Kenya 0-0 Ethiopia A NYAYO 4.30PM
Thur 28th Nov 3 Burundi 2-0 Somalia B MACHAKOS 2.00 PM
4 Tanzania 1-1 Zambia B MACHAKOS 4.00 PM
Fri 29th Nov 5 Sudan 3-0 Eritrea C MACHAKOS 2.00 PM
6 Uganda 1-0 Rwanda C NYAYO 4.30 PM
Sat 30th Nov 7 Ethiopia 3-1 Zanzibar A NYAYO 2.00 PM
8 South Sudan 1-3 Kenya A NYAYO 4.00 PM
Sun 1st Dec 9 Somalia 1-0 Tanzania B NYAYO 2.00 PM
10 Zambia 1-0 Burundi B NYAYO 4.00 PM
Mon 2nd   Dec 11 Sudan 1-0 Rwanda C CITY STAD 2.00 PM
12 Eritrea 0-3 Uganda C CITY STAD 4.00 PM
Tue 3rd  Dec 13 South Sudan 0-2 Ethiopia A AFRAHA  2.00 PM
14 Kenya  2-0 Zanzibar A AFRAHA 4.00 PM
Wed 4th Dec 15 Somalia  v Zambia B AFRAHA  2.00 PM
16 Tanzania v Burundi B AFRAHA 4.00 PM
Thur 5th Dec 17 Rwanda v Eritrea C AFRAHA 2.00 PM
18 Uganda v Sudan C AFRAHA 4.00 PM
Fri 6th  Dec REST DAY
QUARTER FINALS
Sat  7th Dec 19 C1  v  B2 MOMBASA TBC
20 A1  v  Best Q2 MOMBASA
Sun 8th   Dec 21 B1  v  Best Q1 MOMBASA
22 A2   v  C2 MOMBASA
Mon 9th Dec REST DAY
Tue 10th Dec SEMI FINALS
23 Winner 19 v Winner 20 KISUMU TBC
24 Winner 21 v  Winner 22 KISUMU TBC
Wed 11th Dec REST DAY
Thur 12th Dec 25 Loser 23 v Loser 24 NYAYO 2.00 PM
Thur 12th Dec 25 FINALS WIN 23 v WIN 24 NYAYO 4.00 PM