Defending boys football champions Kakamega High have been pitted against Kisumu Day in Pool ‘A’ of the Airtel Rising Stars Kenya Secondary Schools Term 2B games scheduled for July 28 to August 1 at the Machakos Boys grounds.
It will recalled that when the two sides met in the 2014 final,
Kakamega beat Kisumu Day 1-0 to win the national football crown last year hence their meeting at the preliminary stage is expected to set the mood for the tournament. The two sides will play alongside Kathungi from the Highlands region in the pool.
Kenya Secondary Schools Sports Association are yet to make a decision whether Upper Hill from the host Metropolitan region will compete after Northern region confirmed that they will have representatives. Pool ‘B’ is headlined by Metropolitan champions Laiser Hill who defeated Upper Hill in dramatic fashion to earn the region’s direct ticket. They will be up against Coast champions Waa, Mau region’s Simotwo and Passenga from the Aberdares.
In the girls’ competition, Metropolitan’s Olympic and Coast’s St. John’s, who both won their regional titles in emphatic fashion, are grouped in a very competitive Pool ‘A’ alongside Nzoia Region’s seasoned campaigners Wiyeta and Highland region’s Kirigara. Pool ‘B’ will feature hosts Kitina, Mau region’s Eburu, Nginda (Aberdares) and Kobala (Lake region).
The boys’ volleyball competition pit Aberdare region’s Tetu in Pool ‘A’ against Mivumani (Coast region), Ngangani (Highlands) and Malava Boys (Nzoia).
Pe Hill (Lake region), Cheptil (Mau region) and Hospital Hill (Metropolitan) form Pool ‘B’. The composition of the fourth team in this pool as well as the fourth team in girls’ Pool ‘B’ is pending a decision from the KSSSA.
The other teams in Pool B of the girls competition are AIC Kosirai (Mau), Gankanga (Highlands) and Tetu (Aberdares) while Pool ‘A’ features powerhouse Lugulu Girls’ from Nzoia, St. John’s (Coast), Sega (Lake region) and Kwathanze (Metropolitan).
Elsewhere, former volleyball champions Lugulu Girls’ preparations for national show have been disrupted following the heavy pounding Bungoma.
But that not withstanding, head coach Moses Lukorito is positive his charges can kick out the national and East Africa reigning champions Kwanthanze.
“The only challenge we are facing in our preparations is inadequate training time occasioned by the rains but we make the most out of the little moments we get. The girls’ have to attend classes till 4pm when we start training,” he said. He said the team is in good shape and they have no injury worries.
Lugulu Girls have a new team after their first six players completed their High School education last year. This year, the team will rely on opposite hitter Brenda Oparana and outside attacker Joan Chepkom who were regulars in last year’s squad.
Lukorito cited Kwanthanze and AIC Kosirai as the sides to watch at the nationals.