Top guns dropped as Hockey Union name squad for Olympic qualifiers


Top guns dropped as Hockey Union name squad for Olympic qualifiers
Butali Warriors players celebrate Frank Wanangwe's goal against Strathmore University during their Kenya Hockey Union men's Premier League final match at City Park Hockey Stadium on December 03, 2016. The match was abandoned due to rain. Photo/Stafford Ondego/Sportpicha/C itizen.

In Summary

  • Kenya Hockey Union (KHU) has released the final squad of 36 players; 18 men and an equal number of women who will represent the country in the upcoming 2020 Olympic Games qualifier matches to be held in Stellenbosch University, South Africa from August 12-19.
  • With barely less than a week remaining to the kick off of the tournament, Kenya’s participation in the tournament is still in limbo as the government is yet to facilitate the team’s travel.

Kenya Hockey Union (KHU) has released the final squad of 36 players; 18 men and an equal number of women who will represent the country in the upcoming 2020 Olympic Games qualifier matches to be held in Stellenbosch University, South Africa from August 12-19.

With barely less than a week remaining to the kick off of the tournament, Kenya’s participation in the tournament is still in limbo as the government is yet to facilitate the team’s travel.

Union’s Secretary General Wycliffe Ongori said that they are still engaging with the relevant authorities as they seek to salvage the situation even as they race against time.

“We have been engaging the ministry and we expect by close of business tomorrow (Wednesday) we will have the final word concerning the sponsorship. Right now, we remain positive we will honour the tournament,” Ongori revealed.

Ongori further revealed that missing the week-long tournament may hand dire consequences to the national team in future competitions.

“Kenya has been a power house in the continent. In 1970s we were ranked fourth in the world and we have since been a major player of sport in the world. However, we do not have control over the situation because we submitted our budgets back in April and so we can’t be blamed for any delays,” said Ongori.

Back to the team, men’s head coach Meshack Senge has dropped seasoned Butali Sugar Warriors goalkeeper Linus Sang to the standby list with the likes of Sam Ratia, John Kaloti, Ken Munialo, Richard Njuki, Robinson Omutekete, and Samuel Silong all facing the chop.

The women’s team has seen Telkom’s prodigy Eleanor Chebet who has been a revelation since joining the champions in the close season make the cut in the team that will be under the tutelage of United States International University USIU’S head coach Tom Olal.

Kenyan men are in Pool A alongside Nigeria, Uganda and hosts South Africa while the women’s team will lock horns with South Africa and Nigeria.

Men’s team are scheduled to kick off their campaign on Monday, August 12 against neighbours Uganda while the women will take on hosts South Africa on Tuesday in their opening match.

The tournament dubbed ‘African Hockey Road to Tokyo 2020 tournament’ will be played in a round-robin format.

Final squad

Men

Goalkeepers: Simon Odhiambo (Nairobi Simba), Prince Omollo (Parkroad Badgers)

Defenders: Robert Masibo (Police), Constant Wakhura (Butali), Paul Omariba (Strathmore), John Rioba (Wazalendo), Obare Otoro (Greensharks), Clayson Luvanda (Greensharks).

Midfielders: Franklin Wahongo (Strathmore), Ivan Ludiali (Western Jaguars), Moses Ademba (Butali), Francis Kariuki (Butali), Willis Okeyo (Police).

Forwards: Festus Onyango (Strathmore), Douglas Nyerere (Sailors), Danston Baraza (Wazalendo), Arnold Marango (KCA), Amos Barkibir (Butali).

Women

Goalkeepers: Nouvelle Becca (USIU), Cynthia Onyango (Telkom)

 Defenders: Beatrice Mbugua (USIU), Jane Muragu (Strathmore), Flavia Mutiva (Telkom), Lucy Wangeci (Telkom), Leah Amwadho (Amira).

Midfielders: Grace Makokha (USIU), Harriette Omindi (USIU), Ruth Adhiambo (Starthmore), Caroline Guchu (Telkom), Tracy Karanja (Telkom), Leah Omwadho (Amira), Lilian Aura (Telkom).

Forwards: Rhoda Kuira (USIU), Gilly Okumu (Strathmore), Maureen Okumu (Telkom), Eleanor Chebet (Telkom).

 

 

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Story By Gilbert Kiprotich
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