Champions Telkom Orange retain title after walkover

Telkom Orange bagged their 18th league title after they were handed a walkover after on Saturday.

Saturday February 20 2016

The women's Telkom Orange Hockey team on arrival at the JKIA from the Africa Hockey Club Championships in Lusaka,  Zambia on December 20, 2015 where they retained their Africa Hockey Club title. The team won their eighth and fourth consecutive continental title after beating Ghana Police 3-2 on post-match penalties in the final. PHOTO |  MARTIN MUKANGU |

The women's Telkom Orange Hockey team on arrival at the JKIA from the Africa Hockey Club Championships in Lusaka, Zambia on December 20, 2015 where they retained their Africa Hockey Club title. The team won their eighth and fourth consecutive continental title after beating Ghana Police 3-2 on post-match penalties in the final. PHOTO | MARTIN MUKANGU |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

Champions Telkom Orange on Saturday bagged their 18th Kenya Hockey Union (KHU) women’s national league title after they were handed a walkover after their opponents Mount Kenya University (MKU) failed to show up for the encounter at the City Park Stadium.

The result saw Orange handed three free points and five goals without even hitting a ball as they won an unprecedented 18th league title.

This was not how the African Club champions wanted to win the title and the lasses appeared disappointed by the turn of events.

Coach Jos Openda hit out at MKU accusing them of unsportsmanship behaviour but was elated after yet another achievement.

“We wanted to win it in style by giving an impressive performance and winning cleanly but we did not expect this anti-climax.

We are champions once again and we can be proud of what we have achieved, “Openda told Sunday Nation Sport.

UNBEATEN SEASON

“We still want to finish the season unbeaten and we therefore need to win our final three matches of the season. For now, we can savour our success because we want to do it all over again in the coming season.”

Orange will have a chance of at least playing this weekend when they take on Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture (JKUAT) on Sunday morning at the same venue.

The result sees Orange extend their lead at the top of the table to 45 points, eight points ahead of second placed Strathmore University Scorpions.

Orange cannot be overtaken even if they lose their final three matches.

The club had won all of their last 14 matches prior to Saturday’s result scoring 97 goals and only conceding once.

The five free goals moves their tally of the season to 102 goals, a new record in the league and a chance to further increase it in their final three matches of the season.

Last season, Orange beat Scorpions 3-2 on post-match penalties in the final to win the league which was played in a knockout format.

CONSISTENCY

Orange captain Betsy Omalla believes the team fully deserved the title after maintaining consistency and hard work.

“We had the best attack and defence, this combination coupled with team work and prayer helped us retain the title.

This is the best team and we want to continue winning titles," the skipper said.

It was Orange’s second title in two months after lifting their eighth African Cup of Club Champions title in Zambia after beating Ghana Police 3-2 on post-match penalties last December.

In the men’s national league, Chase Sailors thrashed Kabarak University 7-3 at same venue to enhance their chances of securing promotion to the top flight league.