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Daily Nation : February 13th 2014
DAILY NATION Thursday February 13, 2014 TUSKER PREMIER LEAGUE COUNTDOWN ALL SET FOR RACE | The 10-time champs face Thika at City Stadium on Saturday Kimanzi out to reclaim league title with brewers Sport 71 Chemelil put best foot forward ahead of kick-off CHRIS OMOLLO | NATION Chemelil Sugar players leave the pitch at half-time during their Kenyan Premier League match against Gor Mahia at Nyayo Stadium on September 28 last year. BY DAVID KWALIMWA @kwalimwadavid email@example.com Chemelil Sugar coach Mike Mururi has yet to get over the team’s slump in performance towards the end of last season that resulted in the side narrowly missing out on the top eight. The sugar millers finished CHRIS OMOLLO | NATION Tusker’s Osborne Monday (left) vies for the ball with teammates Ali Abondo (centre) and Rogers Omondi during training yesterday at Ruaraka. Tusker coach seeks to lift team from last season’s poor finish to win the KPL BY CELLESTINE OLILO @celliebeckie firstname.lastname@example.org they relinquished in 2012. This was the statement made by the T club’s new head coach Francis Kimanzi yesterday during the unveiling of new players at the team’s Ruaraka home ground. The former Harambee stars tactician took over from Robert Matano who was sacked at the end of last season after the brewers finished fifth in the league. The team has signed up 11 players, among them Clifford Alwanga from KCB, Osborne Monday from Sofapaka and Lloyd Wahome from Mathare United. “I feel very happy to be here. This is a big usker FC is ready to wake up from the nightmare of last season’s disappointing finish to reclaim the title team and the challenges are enormous but we are all ready to reclaim the Kenyan Premier League trophy at the end of the season,” Monday said yesterday. The brewers open their 2014 league sea- son with a clash away to Thika United at Nairobi City stadium on Saturday. Arguably one of the most successful teams in the league, Tusker began last season on a low key as they stuck to the lower half of the league table for the better part of the first leg before springing to life with the season’s biggest away win, a 5-1 drubbing of Kakamega Homeboys in June. Matano left Under Matano, Tusker won the league title in 2011 and 2012. Last season, they finished fifth with 42 points, 18 shy of champions Gor Mahia, a result that saw Matano, now a member of AFC leopards technical team, leave the club. The brewers are banking on the experi- enced Kimanzi to reclaim lost glory. The team will switch their home matches to Meru where they hope to attract a large fan base to rival that of Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards. SQUAD Goalkeepers: Samuel Odhiambo, Bonface Oluoch, George Opiyo Defenders: Moses Odhiambo, Joackins Atudo, Humphrey Okoti, Kennedy Opiyo, Athman Buki, Luke Ochieng, David Ochieng, Jeremiah Bright, Martin Kiiza, Robert Omonuk,Mark Odhiambo, Abud Omar, Govenor Jeffery. Midfielders: Collins Okoth, Ali Abondo, Maurice Odipo, Fredrick Onyango, Joshua Oyoo, Aucho Khalid Strikers: Andrew Tololwa, Jesse Were, Ismail Salim, Benson Anthony, Andrew Ssekayombya, Micheal Olunga. Recruits: Clifford Alwanga, Brian Osumba, Osborne Monday, Lloyd Wahome, Joakins Atudo, Rogers Omondi, Faruk Shikalo, Dennis Nzomo, Duncan Wafula, Kevin Kimani, Bob Mugalia. “The playing surface down there is not so good, but we are working on that with the relevant authorities. We are prepared physically and psychologically to move immediately that is sorted out. It is time we took top-flight football to places outside Nairobi,” said Kimanzi. After 10 league titles and several conti- nental appearances, club chairman James Musyoki, has admitted the league is getting more competitive and there is need to recruit quality players. “If you don’t you are doomed. We are lucky we recruited quality players and coach Kimanzi brings with him a world of experience,” he said. The club will rely on Jesse Were for goals. the campaign in ninth place, with 40 points, just a point off eighth placed Salim Ali’s Ulinzi Stars. Mururi, however, know better than most that he will be required to marshal out a much better performance from his charges. Ran out of gas “Our target last season was to maintain our position in the top eight. I had also sought to better our position from 2012 when we finished seventh. I must say the team started off the campaign very well, but ran out of gas during the end. The squad also took time to recover from the disappointing loss to Thika United in the Top 8 competition’s semi-final,” the former Chemelil and Harambee striker told Nation Sport. Muruli will have to do with- out two reliable players this term, having lost influential forward Jared Obwoge to Gor Mahia and midfielder Victor Omondi to Sony Sugar. “They were important players, but we have worked overtime to bring able replacements, I don’t want us to miss them Muruli pointed out.” Former Sofapaka player Hillary Echesa, forward David Nyanzi, who has also played for Tusker and Sony Sugar, David Okiri, Hamisi Mwinyi, Moses Chikati and Wellingtone Murwayi are among the club’s new signings. 40 Chemelil Sugar’s points in the KPL standings at the end of last season “A top five finish come the end of this campaign will certainly be a good finish, and that is our aim,” the youthful coach added. “Chemo” as the team is fondly referred to by its followers, will begin their 2014 league campaign with an away trip to Nakuru this weekend for a clash with Salim Ali’s Ulinzi Stars, the team that denied them a top four finish last term. SQUAD Goalkeepers: Fredrick Onyango, Jairus Adira, Ramadhan Kamau. Defenders: James Agembe, Charles Okumu, Willis Ouma, Ooko Smith, Samuel Ouma, Peter Ashangu, Wellington Murwayi, Moses Chikali. Midfielders: Jonathan Mwaniki, Daniel Murage, Geordon Likonoh, Stephen Wakhanya, Hillary Echesa, Innocent Wafula, Mwinyi Hamisi, Tony Nyangor, Robert Indimuli. Forwards: Tony Ochieng’, John Mwita, David Nyanzi, Felix Onyango, David Oriki, Valen Mahero. Fledgling Muhoroni Youth eye top six finish in the top flight this term BY DAVID KWALIMWA @kwalimwadavid email@example.com Muhoroni Youth hope to cement their status as a top-flight club in the team’s third consecutive campaign in the Kenya Premier League, according to the team’s head coach Patrick Odhiambo. “We have made some mistakes and gained experience in the top-flight over the past two seasons and I am certain this will finally be the year that we stage an assault to finish among the top six,” club chairman, Samson Adagala said yesterday. Adagala’s ambition is understand- able. The club finished its first league campaign in the top flight in 14th position with 27 points. That performance improved last season as the team increased its points tally by three to finish 10th. So the law of averages seems to support Adagala’s ambition of aiming for a top six finish this term. The man entrusted with the re- sponsibility of achieving this feat is Patrick Odhiambo, a former centre back at Chemelil Sugar who took over the reins from Patrick Imonje. Imonje who was relieved of his duties following what the management termed poor performance towards the end of last season’s campaign. “We saw the need to bring in stability to the team and changing the coach was part of this decision. The change in guard was also meant to stem disharmony within the playing staff,” Adagala indicated in a past interview. Odhiambo is optimistic of achieving the lofty targets set by his employer. “We are aiming for a top five fin- ish-and I have faith my current squad can do it. Our preparations have been very good. I have also had a chance to gauge the current squad with friendly matches and we are raring to go,” Odhiambo said. The team seems to have been the We have made mistakes and gained experience in the top-flight over the past two seasons” Samson Adagala, Muhoroni chair biggest beneficiaries of the relegation of Kakamega Homeboyz. Odhiambo lured Creston Mwanzo, Daniel Waweru, Mike Khaduli and Ronald Otieno from the Bukhungu-based side. Former AFC Leopards forward Emmanuel Tostao, and Martin Oliech who joins from Oserian are also among the club’s recruits. Tostao will be required to fill the huge gap left behind by Nigerian striker Joseph Emeka who joined newly-promoted team Kenya Revenue Authority. “We have recruited carefully and with consideratations for both short and long-term goals.” SQUAD Goalkeepers: Shaban Ouma, Daniel Kiptoo, Stepehem Balozi. Defenders: Paul Opon, Franklyn Osama, Peter Onyango, Ebrahim Ateng, Fan Ngaira, Creston Mwanzo, Doughlas Omondi. Midfielders: Enos Ochieng’, Jackson Maina, Paul Ndung’u, Fred Ochieng, Olesu Tetteh, Jackson Oduor, Erick Mbaki, Martin Oliech, Mike Khaduli, Daniel Waweru. Forwards: Yusuf Mohammed, Jeremiah Wanjala, Ezekiel Otuoma, Abbas Akinyemi, Benjamin Mosha, Emmanuel Onyancha, Ronald Otieno, Kevin Ngugi, Vincent Njuguna, Emmanuel Tostao.
February 12th 2014
February 14th 2014