Kenya secondary Schools Sports Association (KSSSA) national under-16 Boys and Girls soccer champions St. Anthony Kitale and Wiyeta schools are in a tricky pool at this year’s national championships that kicks off on Tuesday in Mombasa.
With all champions coming from Trans Nzoia county have an uphill task to retain their national identity in the term2 A games that will be staged at at Shimo La Tewa in Mombasa.
The 2001 East Africa champions Kitale forced a 1-0 defeat Wahundura at the finals held at Kangaru.
The Rift Valley region champions are placed in group A with football giants Kakamega High school and Ramisi from Coast.
St. Anthony beat Ortum of west Pokot 1-0 in the Rift finals in Eldoret as
Wiyeta defeated Abwao 4-0 in the girls’ finals.
The two teams maintained their unbeaten run during the Rift Valley Secondary School Sports Association Term 2A Games that saw them qualify for the nationals.
Wiyeta eliminated Tartar 2-1.
According to Peter Mayoyo, the tactician for St.Anthony, they are focused on defending their title.
“Our preparations to defend the title begun immediately when we won the national title last year. All along we have been working on perfecting the team eligible for the games,” Mayoyo said.
He said the team is ready for the competition after polishing their nitty-gritties after triumphing at the rift games.
“The morale is high and they are ready for the competition. There were shortcomings we realised during our Rift region competitions and we have perfected them. We are praying God that we will emerge victorious again,” He added.
Girls’ side Wiyeta from TransNzoia are also warming up to the title.
They are pitted in Pool A against Utithi of Eastern, Kwale Girls (Coast) and Nyakach of Nyanza.
Wiyeta coach Wamalwa Awoh said the team is totally new from the previous champions but the side is better this year.
“If you look at the team, they are stronger and skilled than last year. This is a new group o young girls talented in football,”Awoh said.
He said their target is to come out of the preliminaries in order to defend the title.
“Preliminaries are tricky and the girls are confident of successfully defending the title. I have told them not to underrate any team but fight tooth and nail for victory,” He added.
RVSSSA chairman Kipchumba Maiyo said their aim is to scoop the overall title in the games.
“The teams we are fielding for the nationals are strong and we have confident in them that they will deliver the overall title. Last year in term one games we got the overall title and this term 2 A we are targeting it,” Maiyo said.