Favourites Kenya out to dispatch Rwanda in CECAFA tournament

Kenya international Francis Kahata

Phumzile Ngcatshe

Friday Dec 01, 2017. 18:30

Kenya will bank on their home ground advantage as they host Rwanda in their Group A match of the 2017 CECAFA Senior Challenge encounter on Sunday.

The Harambee Stars are seen as favourites to retain the trophy and erase their disappointment after losing the rights to host the 2018 CAF African Nations Championship.

CAF took the hosting rights from the East African nation and handed them to Morocco after their failure to show readiness and provide the necessary infrastructure on time.

However, hosting Rwanda means coach Paul Put will hope to bring smiles back to their fans’ faces come Sunday as their mission is to reach the semi-finals.

Kenya have won the regional tournament six times and finished in the final on seven occasions – the mission for Put is start his tenure with a trophy.

Looking at Rwanda’s Amavubi, their mission is to stun their hosts and claim the full three points to boost their semi-final aspirations.

Rwanda have bagged the CECAFA trophy once and will want to register their second gold medal as they will meet Kenya.

On the other hand, the Antoine Hey-coached side will want to go all the way to the final and erase their disappointments after finishing as number two on six occasions.

The match will be staged at Moi Stadium in Kisumu and get underway at 15:00 (CAT).

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Libya and Tanzania set to start CECAFA tournament with a bang

Phumzile Ngcatshe

Friday Dec 01, 2017. 17:30

Libya will want to cause an upset as guests in the 2017 CECAFA Senior Challenge when they meet Tanzania on Sunday.

The Mediterranean Knights are set to open their account in the East African regional tournament and will hope to make a good impression.

However, meeting the Taifa Stars will bring challenges as both sides will want to start their Group A campaign on a high.

The winner between the two nations will move to the top of the group provided Rwanda and Kenya fail to register their first wins in the other group encounter on the same day.

Meanwhile, the Taifa Stars and Mediterranean Knights will be motivated by the fact that finishing on top and being runners-up will secure a spot in the semi-finals.

The opening clash of the tournament will be staged at Moi Stadium in Kisumu on December 3 at 13:00 (CAT).

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Zimbabwe shock all by pulling out of 2017 CECAFA tournament

Zimbabwe winners of the 2017 Cosafa Castle Cup match between Zambia and Zimbabwe at Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Rustenburg on 09 July 2017 ©Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Scent ition

Thursday Nov 30, 2017. 15:00

Despite having initially agreed to participate at the upcoming 2017 CECAFA Senior Challenge, Zimbabwe has pulled out of the East African tournament.

The Warriors were set to appear at the showpiece as guests, but are not going to Kenya due to security concerns.

Zimbabwe, along with Libya, had been invited as guests for the regional event that will include defending champions Uganda, hosts Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Zanzibar, Burundi, Ethiopia and South Sudan.


With the showpiece starting this Sunday, coach Sunday Chidzambwa had announced a squad, but the Zimbabwe Football Association felt it was not safe for the team to play in Kenya.

“Following wide-ranging consultations with all stakeholders, the Zimbabwe Football Association has resolved to withdraw its commitment to participate in the 2017 Cecafa Challenge Cup due to the security risk posed by the volatile situation in the host country, Kenya,” ZIFA said in a statement on Wednesday.

On the other hand, CECAFA general secretary Nicholas Musonye confirmed they received a letter from the Southern African nation.

“Yes we have received communication from the Zimbabwe FA that they have pulled out the team,” Musonye told the BBC Sport.

Although a source close to the News Day website said the real reason for the withdrawal was because of the unavailability of funds, the FA has rubbished the claims.

Zimbabwe were set to face the Cranes of Uganda on Monday, December 4 and Musonye said they will adjust the fixtures.

He also said the tournament, set to run from 3-17 December, will go ahead.

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Zimbabwe appoint Sunday Chidzambwa as coach for CECAFA tournament

Phumzile Ngcatshe

Tuesday Nov 14, 2017. 16:30

The Zimbabwean Football Association has roped in Sunday Chidzambwa as caretaker coach for the national side for the upcoming Council for East and Central Africa Football Associations (CECAFA) tournament.

The move comes after ZIFA accepted the invitation to play as a guest nation at this year’s edition of the CECAFA tournament to be hosted in Kenya.

Zimbabwe will join Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Burundi, Rwanda, South Sudan, Ethiopia, Sudan and Somalia for the tournament set to be staged between November 25 and December 9.

Known as ‘Mhofu’, the highly-experienced coach led Zimbabwe to their first Africa Cup of Nations qualification in 2004.

Meanwhile, he has also enjoyed considerable success in the Southern African region, winning this year’s Cosafa Cup hosted in South Africa in July.

The ZPC Kariba coach will be looking to further enhance his already impressive CV when he leads the team at the tournament.

Although he faces player availability challenges, Chidzambwa will have to pick his squad before the Zimbabwean Premier Soccer League programme finishes.

However, by the time the last round of matches are played, the Warriors will already be in Kenya which means some clubs may not be able to release their players.

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South African club set to host Xenophobia tournament

Wiseman Maluleke of Jomo Cosmos, and Vusimuzi Mncube of Chippa United during the 2017 Nedbank Cup quarterfinal game between Chippa United and Jomo Cosmos at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth on 22 April 2017 © Deryck Foster/BackpagePix

Phumzile Ngcatshe

Wednesday Aug 02, 2017. 09:00

According to media reports in Swaziland, Mbabane Swallows are invited to participate in the 2017 Xenophobia Cup in South Africa.

It is reported that the four team tournament is set to take place on Sunday, August 6 in Vosloorus, East of Johannesburg and is to be hosted by Jomo Cosmos.

Cosmos are currently campaigning in the South African National First Division and have invited Bulawayo Highlanders of Zimbabwe and Simunye Diaspora, a non-professional team of South African-based foreign nationals.

The Times of Swaziland website has it that a report by the SABC News revealed the tournament will be staged where the four teams will face each other.

Ezenkosi are also set to return to the Vosloorus Stadium in Ekurhuleni (Johannesburg) as their home stadium for the new 2017/18 NFD season.

Fresh from participating at the Prince Mangosuthu Legacy Cup in Ulundi, KwaZulu-Natal last weekend, Swallows will play in another pre-season tourney.

“We are back where we belong and we are happy that the PSL has approved the ground. All along I’ve been playing in the stadium,” said owner and coach of Ezenkosi, Jomo Sono to the SABC.

“I got promoted and then I was told I could not play at the stadium because there are no turnstiles, and they were right.”

On the other hand, Swallows’ boss Victor Gamedze confirmed the invitation to the tournament before hinting on a two-week rest thereafter.

“The players have not had a rest for three seasons now and it will help to give the two weeks away before the start of the season,” Gamedze said.

The Xenophobia Cup is meant to promote humanity among South Africans and other nationals from across the continent.

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Mutizwa named 2017 COSAFA Cup Player of the Tournament

Scent ition

Monday Jul 10, 2017. 15:00

Zimbabwe striker Knox Mutizwa won the main award at the 2017 COSAFA Cup awards which was issued after the final in Rustenburg, South Africa.

The Warriors of Zimbabwe thrashed their neighbours Zambia 3-1 in this year’s COSAFA Cup final at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium on Sunday.

As a result, Zimbabwe won the Southern African title for a record fifth time, for Zambia’s Chipolopolo it was a record fifth defeat in the final of the competition.

Zimbabwe mentor Sunday Chidzambwa also made history as he became the first coach to win the trophy three times – having also won it in 2003 and 2009.

Mutizwa was named the COSAFA Cup Player of the Tournament after the Zimbabwean striker netted five goals in this year’s competition.

Ovidy Karuru, the Zimbabwe captain, walked away with the Golden Boot. The AmaZulu FC attacking midfielder netted six goals in the 2017 tournament.

Tanzania shot-stopper Said Mohamed Said was named the Goalkeeper of the tournament after helping his nation finish third in this year’s competition.

Lesotho and South Africa, the tournament hosts, finished fourth and fifth respectively.

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