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St Anthony bullish

St. Anthony Boys left for Uganda yesterday with the promise of reclaiming their lost glory at the East African Secondary School Games set for August 19-26 in Gulu.

Team Kenya, who have been camping in Busia-Kenya, crossed the border by road for Gulu in 14 buses on Thursday morning, led by director, field coordination and co-curricular activities in the Ministry of Education, Chacha Mwita.

St Anthony was the first Kenyan school to win the regional soccer title in 2002 in Nakuru. Since then no other Kenyan team achieved that feat until last year in Eldoret when Barding, from Nyanza, broke the jinx to win the second title in a championships dominated by Uganda’s St. Mary’s Kitende.

Assistant coach John Wanyama exuded confidence of excelling in the event and even went ahead to predict an all-Kenyan final if everything goes according to script.

“We lost to Upper Hill through penalties in the national finals in Nyeri due to injuries on two of our key players. The team is now solid and with adequate training we are raring to go to win our second title since 2002,” he said.

Upper Hill are traveling to Uganda as national champions alongside Kakamega Green Commandos, who were second runners up. Kakamega are also sending the under 16 soccer team after clinching the national title.

Menengai High School rugby 7s captain Hillary Maloi said the team is out to add the East African crown to their maiden national title they won earlier this year.

National boys’ handball champions Mukumu captain Chris Maende said although it is their first time to qualify for the regional games they are hoping to upset the form book.

National handball girls’ champions Sega captain Cynthia Akinyi said although they are making their debut in the regional games, they are confident of re-writing history. National hockey boys champions St. Anthony captain Basil Wamalwa vowed to avenge for the team’s loss to Friends School Kamusinga in the 2016 finals.

Six countries including Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi and South Sudan will parade their teams for the annual games. Kenya is sending 53 teams with a total of 720 participants.

Kenya will be defending titles in 10 disciplines including basketball (girls), hockey (boys and girls), volleyball (boys and girls), rugby 7s and 15s, football (boys), swimming and athletics.

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