By Brian Yonga
Kenya has lost the rights to host this year’s Africa Women Volleyball Club Championship to Tunisia due to lack of a second standard gymnasium.
The decision was reached after the Confederation of Africa Volleyball (CAVB) rejected Kenya Volleyball Federation’s (KVF) request to use Africa Nazarene University Gymnasium in addition to the Safaricom Kasarani as the event venues.
CAVB said the Africa Nazarene University Gymnasium was not up to standard.
According to FIVB requirements, a tournament of more than 12 teams can only be held in at least two venues.
According to KVF chairman Waithaka Kioni, 16 teams have already confirmed participation to the event ahead forcing the country to shelve its intentions to host the annual continental showpiece.
“It is quite unfortunate because we were looking forward to having the competition on home soil and treat Kenyans to the action, we need to look forward to another time,” Kioni told Nation Sport on Thursday.
Kioni who is also the CAVB vice president lamented the lack of infrastructures in the country calling on the government to fulfill its promises of building sports stadiums.
“Cameroon and Congo Brazzaville have up to six standard facilities capable of hosting international competitions, we are yet to reach these heights yet we pride ourselves in being a volleyball powerhouse,” he added.
The 2012 edition was however held at the Africa Nazarene University in Ongata Rongai.
Last year’s losing finalists Kenya Pipeline, who are also the reigning national champions, four times winners Kenya Prisons and Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) who finished third in the lock league last year are set to represent the country at this year’s edition.
Kenya Pipeline and Egyptian club Ahly have won the premium competition a record seven times.
The Egyptian club dethroned Pipeline in last year’s competition winning 3-1 in the final played in Egypt.
Ruth Jepng’etich and Kenyan international Janet Wanja however grabbed personal accolades as they were feted as best spiker and best setter respectively by the Confederation of African Volleyball championships.
The development comes a few days after Kenya pulled out of the Inter-Continental women’s volleyball Olympic qualifiers.
Kenya failed to book a ticket to the Rio Games during the continental qualifiers held two weeks ago in Cameroon losing to Egypt in the semi-final but had a second chance in the four-nation intercontinental qualifiers before pulling out.
Kenya Volleyball Federation (KVF) national executive meeting resolved not to give the players a second chance after they blew away the chance of winning their first Olympic slot since 2004.
Source: All Africa