FKF spares struggling Shabana FC the NSL axe

Shabana FC players walk out of the pitch in a previous FKF-Premier League game last ...
Shabana FC players walk out of the pitch in a previous FKF-Premier League game last season. The team is challenging exclusion from the newly launched National Super League. PHOTO/Stafford Ondego/

Troubled Gusii-based National Super League (NSL) side Shabana FC earned a reprieve from Football Kenya Federation Competition Committee after their game against Police FC that failed to take off earlier June was declassified as a walkover.

The fallen former top flight giants’ fate in the second-tier hinged on the decision of that match after their Sunday tie against Nakumatt FC failed to take place after the visitors failed to show, gifting the league leaders maximum points.

Had the federation declared the Police FC game a walkover, it would have been a third abandoned game for Shabana meaning automatic relegation according to FKF rules.

The former top flight giants awarded Oserian FC a walkover on June 5 and a week later, match officials gave Police a 2-0 victory on the grounds Shabana were not ready for the match because the Awendo Green Stadium playing pitch was not marked.

“According to the committee, Shabana has handed in only two walkovers, to Oserian and Nakumatt.

“The Committee decided to cancel Police walkover stating that since both teams attended the pre match and were checked by the match officials, unmarking of the field could not justify a walkover,” FKF media boss, Barry Otieno confirmed to Citizen Digital.

Instead the committee declared the match as forfeiture as the host failed in providing a suitable playing ground.

Shabana’s Secretary General, Stephen Kiama, had laid blame on his Chairman, Jared Nivaton for missing to take lead in preparing the team last weekend’s clash.

“The team was well prepared-even ready to travel to Nairobi .We tried to reach the chairman since he was the one in charge of the team’s facilitation. He never showed up. He could not be reached on his phone even to date.

“Our efforts to reach him have since proved futile. We are thinking of mandating the current Vice chairman Doctor Nyandoro Kambi to lead the team starting with the coming game against Zoo Kericho,” Kiama asserted.

Citizen Digital could not reach Nivaton since our calls could not go through.

The team that was re-admitted to the second tier via a decision of the Sports Disputes Tribunal is now in danger of being thrown out of the competition if they fail to honour a third game.

“I believe the committee has done a letter to the club informing them that if they hand in another walkover they will be suspended for the rest of the season and then relegated to the lower tier,” Otieno added.

FKF expelled West Sugar FC from the second tier in April for refusing to honour three consecutive games due to financial constrains that had engulfed them making its operations technical.

Vihiga All Stars and Eastleigh Youth FC were also axed from the FKF National Division Two by FKF two months away for absconding matches.

Meanwhile, the league shall take a rest this weekend as teams take a diversion attention to take part in weekend’s GOtv Shield, as Nakumatt faces KPL’s side Bandari FC in a double header that will see slum boys Kariobangi Sharks battle out with Kisumu’s Palos FC this Friday.

Agrochemicals shall be fighting for a position to remain in the tournament when they shall face Vihiga United on Saturday while Wazito open up another double header with Bidco United at Mumias before AFC Leopards match to Kakamega based Homeboys.

Additional reporting by Dennis Ohuru and Edwin Musalia

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