Uasin Gishu County —the volleyball defending champions in both men’s and women’s categories — romped into quarter-finals to signal their intentions of retaining both titles at the Kenya Inter-Counties Sports and Cultural Association (Kicosca) Games in Kericho on Wednesday.
In the preliminaries of the men’s tournament, Uasin Gishu beat Kisumu, Kakamega and Siaya in the fast-paced competition held at Kericho High School.
In the women’s category, Uasin Gishu thrashed Busia, Nyandarua and Meru by straight sets each to advance to the quarter-finals.
Nicholas Bitok, Uasin Gishu’s men’s coach, said his players were well prepared to retain the title in the seventh edition of the Kicosca Games.
“We are confident of not only retaining the title but also taking the trophy home as are campaigning for a three year straight win,” said Bitok in the company of team manager Alfred Lagat.
He said discipline, team work and high motivation amongst the players was key to winning and that it had been bolstered by the fact that Governor Jackson Mandago was a member of the team and is expected to play today.
Dorcas Tirop, the women’s team manager and Ken Bitok, the coach also expressed confidence of setting history of sorts by retaining the trophy to further prove that the county is not only leading in track but also ball games.
“The county has invested a lot in scouting talents and nurturing them. The level of preparedness of our athletes is also high. We are not only leading as a county in ball games but also in athletics as the home of champions,” said Bitok. Nakuru, Busia, Nandi, Kakamega and Muranga men teams will also proceeding to the quarter-finals.
Kericho’s men’s and women’s handball teams are, meanwhile, waiting to be officially declared the winners.
The men’s team, whose players include former assistant minister Langat Magerer, beat Siaya 24-20 at Kericho Teachers Training College.
Coach Joseph Opaki said Kericho was technically leading the pack and were awaiting to confirmed as the winners after consultation following the failure by other counties to present squads. “We were well prepared for the match and the players had been exposed to adequate training before the kick off.
“We are proud to be leading in this discipline with our players expected to represent the country in East Africa Local Authorities Sports and Cultural Association Games to be held in Kampala at the end of the year,” said Kericho Governor Paul Chepkwony.
In football, Migori hammered Narok 2-0 at Kipsigis Girls’ High School. The first salvo was fired by Sammy Oremo in the 20th minute while the second goal was scored by Evans Omondi in the 57th. Kajiado beat Mombasa 2-1 in another match played at Kericho Green Stadium on a clear sunny afternoon.
Emmanuel Semeti and Robert Kibeika scored the goals for the victors in the first and second half of the matches respectively.
Kericho lost 1-0 to Busia with Jaffer Yakubu netting the lone goal for winners
Kericho 24, Siaya 20
Kericho 20, Siaya 12
Siaya 29, Narok 16, Nairobi 31, Migori 24, Ukatuzi 31, Vigiha 14, Kisii 53, Nyeri 9, Nakuru 49, Kericho 13, Bungoma 37, Busia 19
Kisii 2 Migori 0, Siaya 3 Narok 1, Kisii 3 Narok 2, Siaya 2 Migori 1, Kisii 1 Siaya 0, Nakuru 2 Vihiga 0, Nairobi 2 Siaya 0, Kajiado 2 Mombasa 1, Busia 1 Kericho 0.
Uasin Gishu 3 Siaya 0, Uasin Gishu 3 Kakamega 0, Uasin Gishu 3 Kisumu 0, Busia 3 Migori 2, Nyeri 3 Kajiado 2, Nakuru 3 Nairobi 2, Busia 3 Samburu 0, Migori 3 Kilifi 0, Kiambu 3 Narok 0, Kakamega 3 Bungoma 0, Muranga 3 Meru 0, Nandi 3 Nyandarua 1
Uasin Gishu 3 Meru 0, Uasin Gishu 3 Nyandarua 0, Uasin Gishu 3 Busia 0, Kakamega 0 Kajiado 3, Kiambu 1 Vihiga 3, Kilifi 0 Nandi 3, Muranga 0 Bungoma 3
Kilifi 46 Mombasa 41
From 9:00 at Kipsigis Girls’ High School: Nakuru vs Kisumu, Kilifi vs Mombasa
From 9:00 am at Kericho Green Stadium: Kisii vs Ugatuzi, Nairobi vs Siaya
To be played at Kipsigis Girls’ High School: Nakuru vs Kisumu, Bungoma vs Kilifi.