KAKAMEGA, Kenya, Mar 21 – The inaugural edition of the Chapa Dimba Na Safaricom youth football tournament enters home stretch this weekend in Kakamega County as 15 teams, 8 boys and 7 girls battle it out for top honours in the National Finals at the Bukhungu Stadium.
The opening ceremony of the tournament will be held on Thursday morning at the Bukhungu Stadium as Kakamega High School is also scheduled to host some of the quarter final matches.
“We started the tournament with over 1,600 teams back in September and we are looking forward to seeing the best 15 sides in action this week in Kakamega,” Sylvia Mulinge, Director Consumer Business, Safaricom, said.
In the boys’ quarterfinals, Mukumu Boys from Western will face Shimba Hills from Coast in a mouth watering clash as Al Hayat from North Eastern take on Nairobi champions Gor Mahia Youth.
In the other last eight games, Ombek Red Devils from Nyanza will play Euronuts from Central and Mwingi Junior from Eastern will face Rift valley’s Kapenguria Heroes.
Thirteen players from the tournament have been called up to the national under 20 team while another 6 have been snatched up by various Kenya Premier League clubs.
“Chapa Dimba Na Safaricom has given an opportunity for us to discover young talented players especially from the grassroots. The likes of James Omsinde and John Njuguna have earned call ups to the national under 20 team while gifted players such as David Majak, Fredrick Krop and Oscar Kengwa have been signed up by Kenya Premier League teams,” FKF boss Nick Mwendwa stated.
In the girls’ category, Waa Girls from Coast will play Tar Tar from Rift as Beijing Raiders from Nairobi face Arch Bishop Njenga from Western.
Plateau Queens from Nyanza and Ngakaa Talent Academy from Eastern will also battle for a place in the last four. Limuru Starlets from Central got a bye to the semis as there was no girls’ team from North Eastern.
Teams that qualify for the semifinals are set to pocket Sh 250,000 each, while the finalists will take home Sh 500,000. The overall winners in each category will receive Sh 1mn, as well as a trip to London for a one week training camp.
While in London they will also get a chance to interact with the tournament’s Brand Ambassador Victor Wanyama, who turns out for English Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur.