Soaring St Anthony inch closer to East Africa glory
Stanley Mativo in Arusha
Powerhouse St. Anthony’s Kitale underlined their East Africa Schools Games title credentials in football and hockey at the ongoing regional inter-schools championship here in Arusha, Tanzania after cruising to quarter and semi-finals respectively on Tuesday.
In football, the one-time East Africa champions and multiple national champions bounced back to winning ways thrashing newcomers Jeshi la Kujenga Uchumi (JKU) of Zanzibar 3-0 in their penultimate preliminary match played at International Schools Moshi grounds to storm the quarter finals with a game to spare.
Daniel Odhiambo, Issa Lumumba and Alphonce Omondi scored a goal apiece to send the Kitale based team to the last eight as they eye the second regional title which has eluded them since 2002 when they lastly won the gong.
The national champions cruised to the quarter finals on six points after winning 4-0 in the first match against SS Lindi of Tanzania before losing 1-0 to the defending champions Buddo of Uganda on Monday.
In last-year’s edition held in Rwanda, St. Anthony crashed out at the last eight stage falling to Kakamega and head coach Peter Mayoyo is brimming with confidence his charges will sail to finals.
“We have one match remaining before the quarter finals but I have already set my focus to the quarter finals. This year my players have come of age and I can dare to dream on the elusive title,” he charged.
In hockey, St. Anthony defending champions swatted Namilyango of Uganda 4-0 to finish unbeaten in the group stages easing to the semi-finals on nine points.
St. Anthony saw off Mbooni 1-0 before edging Ntare of Uganda on Monday in their second pool matches.
In rugby 15s, national champions Kakamega bagged a third straight win defeating Ugandan side Namilyango College 24-11 on Tuesday.
The Barbarians scored four tries in the win and converted two of them while Namilyango from Uganda scored one try and two penalties.
Collins Indeche scored twice in the match while Mein Roy and Bradley Lidiema added a try each. Philip Otieno drilled in two conversions for Kakamega’s 24 points. Latim Timothy scored Namilyango’s sole try, their two penalties were scored by Calvin Gizimba and Otaala Jonathan.
Having now beaten their closest challengers Dagoretti and Namilyango, Kakamega have inched closer to reclaiming their title they lastly won in 2016.
The 13-time national champions will be crowned champions if they win their next two matches of the three remaining where they will play against Mary’s Kisubi, Ntare and Okweesa of Tanzania.