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Kisumu to host Copa Coca-Cola national finals

Subunly captain Feisal Abdi vies for the ball against a St Peters Mumias High school opponent during their Copa Cocacola Under-16 School Games Championship at the Hill School in Eldoret on Tuesday July 24, 2018. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 25 – The 2019 Under-16 COPA Coca-Cola Nationals will be staged at the Kisumu National Polytechnic next week with the winning teams representing Kenya in the second edition of the COPA Coca-Cola Africa to be held later in the year.

A total of 32 teams will battle it out for the title in the Lakeside city from July 30- August 3.

Last year’s defending champions, both boys and girls, are notably missing from the nationals this year. St. Anthony High School (boys) and Moi Girls Nangili (Girls) were knocked out during the preliminary matches of their regional games held last month in Rift Valley and Western Region respectively.

The 2016 girls’ champions Wiyeta Girls (Rift Valley Region) will be seeking to stamp their dominance in the girl’s category after being defeated in the finals last year against the eventual champions Moi Girls Nangili.

The Rift Valley heavyweights have been pooled in group A alongside Dagoretti Mixed Secondary School (Nairobi Region), Njabini Girls (Central Region) and Ugari Mixed (Nyanza Region).

In group B, the third runners up in last year’s championship, Coastal region champions Waa Girls will be playing against Kobala Mixed (Nyanza Region), Maeni Girls (Western Region) and Itaara Secondary School (Eastern Region).

In the boys category, in Pool A, Goseta Boys (Rift Valley Region), will be battling it out against Koyonzo Secondary School (Western Region), Serani Secondary School (Coastal region) and Gatamaiyu High School (Central Region).

-Dagoretti High seek title

In Pool B, Dagoretti High School from Nairobi region will be seeking to win this years’ tournament after an impressive performance in the regional championships.

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They have been pooled against Agoro Sare Secondary School (Nyanza Region), Machakos Boys High School (Eastern Region) and a representative from the North Eastern Region.

During this year’s tournament, The Coca-Cola System in Kenya embarked on an environmental behavior change campaign. One school in every region (former provinces) pitches are set to be revamped with the winner being determined by the school that achieves the highest number of kilos.

The national games are a culmination of the Under-16 boys’ and girls’ tournament. A total of 5,400 schools registered and participated for a chance to be inaugurated as the national champions and a direct ticket to the COPA Coca-Cola Africa Cup.

The North Eastern Regional Finals will be held at Takaba Secondary School in Mandera from 24th to 26th July 2019. The winning team will then proceed to Kisumu to battle it out for the national title.

Nyanza region as the hosts, will be represented by two girl’s teams since North Eastern region will not be fielding a girls’ team.

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