Baraza set for more plaudits


NAIROBI, Kenya, November 18- Harambee Stars striker John Baraza is the only known outright winner of the Kenyan Premier League’s annual awards to take place next Wednesday.
Last season, the Sofapaka man shared the “Golden Boot” award for the league’s top scorer [15 goals] with Tusker’s Nigerian import Joseph Emeka.

But this year, Baraza scored 16 times, five more than his nearest rival Ezekiel Odera of KCB who scored 11.

Baraza will lift the “Golden Boot” trophy together with a payment of Sh100,000. His overall playing form was one of the brightest in the season and is likely to have also been nominated for the “Footballer-of- the-Year Award” with the highest individual prize of Sh200,000.

Baraza won the coveted prize last year. In the gala night on November 24, beginning at 7pm at Safari Park Hotel, Thika Road, KPL will award cash and trophy prizes worth Sh8.6 million.

Ulinzi Stars will earn Sh3 million for winning this year’s KPL title, dethroning Sofapaka. The club with the best “Fairplay record” will receive Sh225,000.

But a total of Sh5 million will also be distributed to the 16 KPL clubs according to their ranking at the end of the season. Ulinzi will, therefore, receive an additional Sh588,500 for being the No.1 team and the runners-up, Gor Mahia will get Sh551,700.

Third-placed Tusker will take home Sh514,900 and in a diminishing scale, everyone will take home something including the relegated Red Berets [No.15] Sh73,300 and No.16 Mahakama, Sh36,500.

Hundreds of guests from the 16 KPL clubs, from Government and private sector corporates are expected at the colourful event.

Heavily involved in the organisation and televising of the event will, as usual, be SuperSport International, KPL’s main partners.

It’s another land mark in the phenomenal growth of Kenyan football and we shall all be celebrating as we look forward to an even brighter next season,” said KPL Chief Executive Officer Jack Oguda on Wednesday. Oguda said the panel to decide the award winners solely comprised a committee of Premiership coaches.

The 18 awards will be:

1. KPL champions – Sh3million
2. “Fairplay” player of the year
3. New player of the year
4. Goalkeeper “
5. Defender “
6. Midfielder “
7. Coach “
8. Team manager “
9. Centre referee “
10. Assistant referee “
11. Print journalist of the year
12. TV journalist “
13. Radio journalist “
14. Photo journalist “
15. Chairman’s lifetime achievement award
16. “Fairplay” club of the year
17. 2010 Premiership top scorer “Golden Boot” Award
18. Football Player of the Year Award