NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 17 – Gor Mahia head coach Steve Polack has become the first tactician to win the Fidelity Insurance, Sports Journalists of Kenya (SJAK) Kenyan Premier League coach of the month award three times in one season after trouncing AFC Leopards’ Anthony Kimani for the February gong.
Polack, who led K’Ogalo to three victories, a draw and a loss in February, polled 10 points narrowly edging out Kimani who polled nine points in the final pool of voting by the SJAK football commission.
The tactician was belatedly awarded on Wednesday, adding on to two previous awards in October and November last year.
“It’s an honor to get a third award and I am just as pleased as I was when I got my first one. To get an individual award makes you feel good but football for me is a group effort. I dedicate this to my staff and players who have put in the hard work throughout and without them I wouldn’t be here with this trophy,” Polack stated.
He added; “And also to the supporters; we all know Gor have the best supporters in Kenya and they have played their part to push the team to do better.”
In the month of February, Gor started the month of love by beating Nzoia Sugar 3-0. They encountered speed bumps with a 3-1 loss at the hands of Sofapaka followed up by a 1-1 draw with Western Stima, before they bounced back to win in identical 3-2 score-lines against Zoo Kericho and Stima.
Leopards on the other hand won three and lost one.
With the tough conditions currently Gor are facing with lack of payment, the Sh75.000 that comes with the award will be a huge boost to Polack who says he has only seen his salary in bits and pieces over the last five months.
“Well to be honest it has been tough but we hope things will get better. I have been talking to the chairman on a daily basis and he is doing his best. Hopefully in the next week or so we will have something. Of course it is hard with the COVID-19 situation because no one is open to giving money but we remain hopeful,” Polack stated.
He added; “Of course I will try share out this (Sh75,000) with some of my technical bench members but of course it is not so much to share with everyone. But definitely it is going to help me a bit.”
Meanwhile, Fidelity Insurance says it will consider extending the partnership with SJAK despite the financial difficulties occasioned by the Pandemic.
“As Fidelity we keep our promise and that is why we are here today to award Polack for his win in February. We want to congratulate him for winning this thrice in a row. We are proud to do this especially at this difficult time and we will keep talking with SJAK over extension this partnership,” said Nicholas Malesi, the Fidelity Insurance Marketing and Business Development Manager.