WEST POKOT, Kenya, Mar 26 – After their triumphant Chapa Dimba Na Safaricom victory, Kapenguria Heroes were treated to a warm reception during their home-coming as the Kapenguria town came to a standstill to welcome the conquers on Monday.
Living truly to their name, Kapenguria Heroes defied all the odds to stun Gor Mahia Youth 3-0 in post-match penalties to lift the inaugural tournament’s title and earn a life time trip to London for a week-long training in May and receive mentorship from Harambee Stars skipper and Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Victor Wanyama.
The team that got an overwhelming backing from their fans and officials from the County Government, who travelled all the way from West Pokot to Kakamega’s Bukhungu Stadium, started their convey at Kitale town shortly after 2pm.
Led by a County Government chase car, the convey that also comprised of Tartar Girls, who come from the region as well, had a stop over at Murkwijit, located at the border of Trans Nzoia and West Pokot where they were received by traditional dancers, had a jig with the teams before being congratulated by the County Sports minister Emily Chepoghisho.
Now in their home county, the convey cheered on the road side by the residents, then snailed through Psigrio before passing the busy Makutano all the way to Kapenguria Town before heading to Governor John Lonyangapuo’s office where they met another set of traditional dancers who sung and dance for the heroes.
In a rare occasion the residents coming from all ages were allowed to flock in the governor’s premises.
A very cheerful Lonyangapuo, who had some time to dig at Gor Mahia, rewarded the team with goodies, giving both Kapenguria and Tartar who were runner-ups in the Boys category Sh100, 000 each and promised to organise a breakfast date with Deputy President, William Ruto and lunch with President Uhuru Kenyatta in April.
“Gor Mahia gave birth to Gor Youth who they fainted on Sunday as we beat them, they got a shock so we want to show them that we also have talent in soccer,” Lonyangapuo said while receiving the team outside his office.
“There are many people in Kenya including some here they are asking themselves can anything good come out of West Pokot? But the grace of God was upon us and we beat all the teams and reached the final. For that effort we are going to reward teams. Tomorrow (Tuesday) morning I am going to pay Sh200, 000 school fees for the 22 players from Tartar and have breakfast with them,” Lonyangapuo added.
Kapenguria Heroes despite not having a proper training facility, has produced top players thanks to the tournament that saw South Sudanese striker David Majak, Fredrick Krop and goalkeeper Brian Lumumba join Kenyan Premier League side Kakamega Homeboyz for a three-year contract.