NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 5- Seven-time African Women Volleyball Club Champions Kenya Pipeline will begin their journey to break a 13-year wait for their eighth title when they take on hosts El Shams in the opening day of the 2018 edition in Cairo, Egypt on Tuesday.
El Shams will be the toughest opposition for Pipeline in the group stages with the Egyptians having reached last year’s final losing 3-2 to eventual champions Carthage of Tunisia.
Pipeline, and by extension Kenya Prisons have been placed in relatively manageable pools for the championship which will climax on March 16.
Pipeline will also face off with Cameroun’s FAP, DGSP of Congo and Uganda’s Vision Club in Pool C.
Kenya Prisons will meanwhile begin their hunt for a first title since 2013 with a match up against Ivory Coast’s Asec Mimoas while they will also duel with Cameroun’s Injs, Nigeria’s Customs and Douanes from Burkina Faso in Group D.
A record 22 teams have confirmed participation for the event and both Kenya teams have accepted that competition will be tougher this year.
“An expanded pool of teams definitely means that the competition becomes stronger and as a team we are ready for that. We expect competition from of course our own local rivals Pipeline, the host teams and the Cameroonian teams as well,” Prisons head coach David Lung’aho said.
Pool A: Al Ahly (Egypt), Nkumba University (Uganda), Nyong (Cameroun), Rwanda Revenue Authority (Rwanda)
Pool B: Carthage (Tunisia), Harare City (Zimbabwe), Chlef (Algeria), Bafia (Cameroun), Botswana Defense Forces (Botswana)
Pool C: El Shams (Egypt), Kenya Pipeline (Kenya), FAP (Cameroun), DGSP (Congo), Vision Club (Uganda).
Pool D: Kenya Prisons (Kenya), Injs (Cameroun), Customs (Nigeria), Douanes (Burkina Faso), Asec Mimosa (Ivory Coast).