Kenya Roll Ball teams place third at 2017 World Cup
Kenya men and women Roll Ball teams finished third in the fourth edition of the Roll Ball World Cup that concluded in Dhaka, Bangladesh on Wednesday.
The women side failed to defend the title they won at the 2015 edition when they beat India in the final after being beaten in the semi final by Iran who inflicted a painful 3-2 defeat on them.
In spite of their impressive showing since the start of the tournament, the Jacob Nyaundo coached side could not make it past a resilient Iran who capitalized on a blunt front line and leaking defense to outwit the defending champions.
Kenya women finished third after thumping Senegal 8-1 in the play-off for some scant consolation where Purity Siyengo, Brenda Angaya and Monicah Ndung notched braces with Lydiah Wangui and Joan Waithera adding a goal apiece.
The match was halted midway after the Senegalese started a fight but the Kenyans refused to be provoked by maintaining their calm to see out the game.
“It was devastating for the girls to lose their first game in the semis especially since it was so closely fought,” team manager Mussa Kaguli remarked.
Iran and 2015 beaten finalists India who overcame Senegal in the last four advanced to vie for the title later Wednesday.
Meanwhile the men side coached by Jared Onyango improved on their fourth position in 2015 by thrashing hosts Bangladesh 7-1 in their play off.
The evergreen trio of captain Moses Atenya, Albert Omware and Joseph Alukhala notched doubles apiece with Kelvin Amito rounding the punishment.
Their dream of bringing home the prestigious title were cut short following a heavy 10-4 beating from defending champions India in the semis.
Kenya men had a bright start to their campaign and similar to the ladies won all their group stage matches.
Kenya defeated Senegal 4-0, Denmark 5-3 and Sri Lanka 5-0 and were awarded with a walk over against the Philippines.
Prior to the start of the tournament there were concerns over the ability of the Kenyan teams to perform well in Dhaka following the myriad of challenges they encountered including poor facilitation and a delayed flight out.
-Report by Mwangi Githinji
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