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Kenya plummet to 131st in FIFA rankings

Harambee Stars Ayub Timbe beats Aaron Katebe of Zambia CapsNAIROBI, October 1- Kenya has plummeted 15 places to 131st in the latest Coca-Cola FIFA Rankings as a repercussion of the damaging home defeat to Zambia in their second 2017 AFCON qualifying Group E clash.

Harambee Stars who were 116th in the previous list have also sunk to 40th in Africa in a development that piles more pressure on head coach, Bobby Williamson, who is preparing to lead the side to Mauritius on October 7 in the first leg of their 2018 World Cup pre-qualifier.

It means Kenya is is inching closer to match or surpass their worst ever rating of 137th in July 2007 at the height of the supremacy wars over the games’ leadership with the away Mauritius clash now adopting a bigger significance to ward off the free fall.

Stars lost 2-1 to Chipolopolo on September 6 where Michael Olunga opened the scoring for the hosts before Zambia turned the result by the end of the first half in a match made infamous by lurid claims of a sex orgy at the team’s hotel and other players breaking team curfew to party the night away on the eve of the clash.

Congo Brazzaville and Zambia share Group E’s lead on four points apiece with Stars who led the pool ahead of the clash sliding to third on goal difference ahead of Guinea Bissau.

Kenya play Mauritius on October 7 in the first leg before hosting the return a fortnight later with the winner advancing to face Cape Verde who shot up the rankings by 15 places to settle in 41st globally in a bid to make the Russia 2018 World Cup finals.

Williamson rolled out a squad of 20 for the first leg and the local based players are expected to enter training camp Friday in Nairobi.

He dropped six, five who were accused of taking part either in the alleged orgy or staying up late from the team.

As a measure to ward off against any excesses, The Scot has shifted the team’s camp to Moi International Sports Complex, eight kilometres away from the city centre but the chosen venue could prove a problem.

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The annual international rugby invitational, Safari Sevens is also scheduled for the same venue over the weekend with 14 invited teams and two local sides taking part, including 2016 Olympics hosts, Brazil.

Argentina jumped above world champions, Germany to take charge of the world rankings with Belgium, Portugal, Colombia, Spain, Brazil, Wales, Chile and England rounding the top ten in that order.

Algeria (19) lead the African rankings ahead of continental champions, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Tunisia and Senegal who round the first five.

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