KAKAMEGA, Kenya, Nov 14 – Kakamega Homeboyz forward Jeremiah Wanjala has been recognised for his outstanding form in the month of September to be named the SportPesa/Sports Journalist Association of Kenya (SJAK) Player of the Month.
Wanjala was voted the best by the SJAK Football Commission, receiving 19 points to win the monthly gong ahead of fellow strikers Meddie Kagere of Gor Mahia who came second with 15 points while Kariobangi Sharks in-form hit man Masoud Juma was third with 14 points.
The 29-year-old stood tall over the rest of nominees after scoring two goals and providing two assists to see Homeboyz under the tutelage of 2014 Coach of the Year Mike Mururi sit second in the Kenyan Premier League standings in the month of September.
Wanjala opened his account in Homeboyz’s 1-0 win over his former employer Sony Sugar at the Bukhungu Stadium, then provided an assist as his club beat Thika United 2-1 at home before seeing his side settle for a twin goalless draw away to Western Stima and AFC Leopards.
He returned to his best in their last match that month, scoring and providing an assist as Homeboyz humbled Sofapaka 2-1.
Speaking after receiving the award at the team’s training ground at Bukhungu Stadium, Wanjala said his aim is to aid Homeboyz finish third in the Kenyan Premier League.
“I am very happy to win this award; It will motivate me to work even more. I expected to win the award because I performed well in September and I will not stop. I thank my team-mates and coach for enabling me win it,” Wanjala said.
“Discipline has played a key role in my career this season and also following the coach’s instructions. He welcomed me back at Homeboyz after I parted ways with Sony which was not in a good way and that’s why I had to score in our match against them to show them that I am still a good player,” the soft spoken Wanjala added.
Head coach Mururi was elated the award came to one of his best players, saying their focus is to finish third as he congratulated Gor Mahia for winning the 2017 KPL title.
“Wanjala is a disciplined player and he follows instructions and it has paid off today. We went unbeaten in September, winning three and drawing two but we slipped a bit. Its now obvious that we cannot beat Sofapaka to second. Now our aim is to finish third and I am sure we will beat Nzoia to attain that target.”
Wanjala was awarded with Sh100, 000 by sponsors SportPesa and a 49-inch LG smart television screen while the team got Sh50, 000.
Wanjala rejoined Homeboyz this season after having a short stint with Sony Sugar, having made his Kenyan Premier League debut in 2013 with Muhoroni Youth, a club he joined from Afrochemicals.
He earned his maiden call-up with the national football team Harambee Stars in March 2017 when First Coach Stanley Okumbi named him among a provisional squad of 26 local based players for the international friendly matches against Uganda and DR Congo.
Having only managed to score three goals in 2016, Wanjala has struck in seven goals this season and has a chance of increasing the tally when his Kakamega Homeboyz travel to the Sudi Stadium to face Nzoia Sugar in their last match of the season.