Coronavirus Pandemic: How KPL clubs are keeping players fit


Coronavirus Pandemic: How KPL clubs are keeping players fit
Ulinzi stars FC players celebrate scoring against AFC Leopards SC during their KPL TOP 8 tournament match at the Nyayo National stadium in Nairobi, Kenya on May 01, 2016. Ulinzi stars FC won 3-2.[Photo/SPORTPICHA]

In Summary

  • With the Coronavirus pandemic biting hard, sports has been adversely affected; leagues halted, major international sports championships pushed back as athletes devise ways of keeping fit.
  • In Kenya the situation is not different as footballers plying their trade in the Kenyan Premier League seek ways of keeping in shape following the suspension of the league.
  • So, what exactly are they doing?

With the Coronavirus pandemic biting hard, sports has been adversely affected; leagues halted, major international sports championships pushed back as athletes devise ways of keeping fit.

In Kenya the situation is not different as footballers plying their trade in the Kenyan Premier League seek ways of keeping in shape following the suspension of the league.

So, what exactly are they doing?

“The instructions where very simple: we have to self-isolate. Immediately after the Ushuru game we told our players to take the necessary precaution. We gave them a routine on what to do to keep fit so that when the season resumes we won’t be badly off in terms of fitness,” AFC Leopards coach Anthony Kimani said, lifting the lid on how his players are coping.

“We are having constant communication with the players in our different communication platforms just to  make sure that we monitor their health and training routine when isolated, but the most important thing at the moment is to adhere to the government instructions to self-quarantine,” said the youthful tactician.

At league rivals and 2009 champions Sofapaka, the picture is not very different.

“The clubs is not taking any risks with this disease; it’s a worldwide pandemic and being a contact game we have the instructions to take good care of our health.

“I’m having personal training in isolation with the rest of the squad but we all agreed  that we should try as much as possible  to remain fit even in isolation,” team skipper said  George Maelo says.

However, at military side Ulinzi Stars, the script is different. Contrary to their KPL colleagues, they are required to be at work since they are soldiers first.

“The team is still intact; no one has left for their respective units. Being a soldier they are always required to be fit, and that’s what we are trying to do as a team. It’s a sad state of affair because the momentum of the team has been affected, but we can’t take any risk with this deadly virus,” veteran coach Benjamin Nyangweso said.

At the Coast, Bandari FC had rolled out plans of returning to training this Monday but all that has been halted as the pandemic spreads on.

“We were expecting to return to training on Monday if all went well, but from the look of things we have been forced to postponed until  March 30,” team manager and former skipper Wilson Oburu explained.  “The situation will be under control, we have come up with a training program shared with the players in our respective communication channels that they are required to practice in isolation.”

At Kakamega Homeboyz, a club that hopes to dethrone Gor Mahia from the league title, the picture is not rosy either.

“It’s a sad state for sports around the world. We were fighting for the title and the momentum has been affected,”Muyoti regretted

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Story By John Kyanda
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