NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 13 – Kenya Prisons women’s volleyball team has suffered a major injury blow after captain Loice Jepkosgei joined the growing list of crocked players with about a month to the Kenya Volleyball Federation national playoff set for November 25-27 in Mombasa.
Jepkosgei’s leadership and presence will be missed on Friday after she was omitted from the travelling squad for Eldama Ravine, host of the last circuit of the regular season that will determine who moves to the best eight next month in Mombasa.
Jepkosgei who captained Kenya to gold in the last All Africa Games twisted her ankle in training on Thursday.
The latest devastating news means head coach David Lung’aho must come up with a strategy to stop Kenya Pipeline from securing their third national TTL in a row when the best four men and women’s clubs parade in Makande from November 25.
With Mercy Moim clearly out of Lung’aho’s plans and mounting pressure from his employers to bring back the title he last laid his hands on in 2013, the former KCB and national team setter must find solutions to fix his attacking line. Prisons’ left and right attacking positions are the most affected.
Moim left Prisons last month for a third professional stint in Europe and her absence alongside that of Everline Makuto who was the first to be ruled out with a knee injury which has kept her out of action for the better part of this season.
That desperation forced the big man to convert a libero into an attacker. Elizabeth Wanyama, who started her volleyball career as an attacker, about 15 years ago at Kahawa Youth before she was converted into a libero has been moved to the left and her attacking prowess will be put to test in Ravine.
Wanyama who was dropped in the last leg held in Voi is expected to assist Lydia Maiyo on the leaking left. Natural centre blocker, Praxcides Agala will be expected to play two roles, defending and at racking as Lungaho gambles with his squad.
Prisons, though safely in the playoff, have three tough fixtures this Friday in Ravine and he will use the opportunity to test his squad cohesion and mental strength ahead of the playoff.
Six time national champions will play perennial rival Kenya Pipeline, Nairobi Water and Bungoma County in a formality matches which Lung’aho will be using to test the effectiveness of his right attack which has inexperienced Emmaculate Chemutai.
Elizazabeth Wanyama, Judith Tarus
-By Elvince Joshus-