NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 25 – The Chapa Dimba na Safaricom tournament organizers are exploring a possible resumption date of mid-August, but it will all depend on government restrictions over the COVID-19 pandemic.
The tournament was halted in early March as they prepared to head to the Nyanza regional finals due to government restrictions put in place to mitigate the spread of the virus.
According to Deputy Tournament Director Patrick Korir, talks have been ongoing to see whether the final two regional finals; Nyanza and Western, as well as the nationals will be completed.
“There is definitely a plan (to conclude). We have been in discussions with Safaricom and Football Kenya Federation to see whether we can resume the games in August. We had about seven weekends remaining; two for Western and five for Nyanza then we give space to do the nationals,” Korir told Capital Sports.
He added; If possible, we will resume in the second week of Augist and finish in the third weekend of September but that will definitely depend on guidelines from the Ministry of Health and directives from the government.”
The last region to do its finals was Rift Valley after which the tournament was to head to Nyanza.
President Uhuru Kenyatta is scheduled to give another set of directives on July 6 and among the key issues will be whether or not the cessation of movement orders in Nairobi and Mombasa will be lifted as well as the lifting of a ban on gatherings.
At the same time, Korir remains optimistic that the planned All-Star tour of Spain will go on this season.
“We need to have a tripartite meeting with Safaricom, La Liga and FKF to explore what is possible. Once we agree then we can actualize. But there is some hope with sports opening up in Spain and we hope we can have that camp because it does great things to the players,” Korir stated.
Two weeks ago, La Liga’s representative in Kenya Oliver Dodd said they are still keen on the agreement that would have seen 32 players scouted to travel for a 10-day training camp in Madrid.
“We will do that in December or November maybe, depending on how the situation will be. The tournament was postponed when it was headed towards the end and we have to finish first then organize the trip to Spain. It is something that will be done. We will go to Spain. It is just a question of when,” Dodd stated.