West Pokot set to rewrite history in inaugural Talanta Hela U19 National event

Friday, December 8th, 2023 01:00 | By
West Pokot set to rewrite history in inaugural Talanta Hela U19 National event
Part of the action on the second day of the Talanta Hela U-19 matches. PHOTO/KENYA ACADEMY OF SPORTS

West Pokot County boys’ football team has arrived in Nairobi with hopes of making history by securing the inaugural Talanta Hela U19 National Tournament trophy.

Having won consecutive matches to advance to the knockout stage, the team is ambitious, but their immediate challenge lies against a formidable Vihiga County side today.

Head coach Yona Wasike expresses their determination to transform the perception of their team from being labeled as ‘cattle rustlers’ to ‘football rustlers’.

“Many people have associated us with cattle rustling, but that is in the past. We’re focused on changing that narrative. We are not cattle rustlers; we are football enthusiasts. We understand the significance of nurturing football talent in our local areas, like West Pokot.

Our goal is to contend for the title and demonstrate to the nation that West Pokot harbours substantial football talents, both in boys and girls. It would be gratifying to witness some of my players scouted and either training or signing contracts with premier league clubs in Nairobi,” said Wasike to People Sport.

Following their efforts in Group matches since last Sunday’s opening ceremony at Nyayo Stadium, the tournament progresses to the quarterfinals today, showcasing exciting matches.

West Pokot, after a loss in their initial game against Mombasa, will challenge the high-flying Vihiga side, which claimed victory in all three group games, securing the top spot in a challenging Pool A.

As the tournament continues, favorites Homabay will encounter Mombasa, while Nakuru faces Nyamira at the Jumhuri Grounds. Makueni will clash with Kisumu at the Kasarani Annex in another anticipated matchup.

One standout match to anticipate is Homabay against Machakos at the Kasarani Stadium. The Homa Bay Girls’ team, displaying a remarkable statement of intent, scored 40 goals across their three group games.

The tournament’s semifinals are scheduled for Sunday, leading up to the final on next Tuesday at Nyayo Stadium, concluding the Jamhuri Day celebrations.

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