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Defender Joseph 'Crouch' Okumu' clears the ball under pressure from Comoros' Ahmed Mogni during the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Comoros at the Moi Sports Centre Kasarani on November 11, 2020. PHOTO/Raymond Makhaya

Football

Harambee Stars hit with double injury blow ahead of Egypt tie

NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 23 – Harambee Stars has been hit with a double injury blow ahead of Thursday’s 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Egypt at Kasarani with defender Joseph ‘Crouch’ Okumu and striker Eric Kapaito ruled out.

Okumu picked up a knock while turning out for his Swedish top tier club IF Elfsborg in a friendly match while Kapaito pulled his hamstring during the team’s first day of residential training on Monday.

“It will be a big gap missing those two players. I spoke to Okumu last evening and he was sounding a little bit better. He was down when that happened but he is better now. But we still have able replacements for the two,” coach Jacob ‘Ghost’ Mulee said on Tuesday.

Kapaito who scored in the friendly win over Tanzania has been in good form at club level and is currently the BetKing Premier League top scorer and was looking forward to earning his first ever competitive cap for the national team.

Meanwhile, Mulee will have to do with a new central defense partnership with Brian Mandela also ruled out having just recovered from injury.

With Okumu out, Joash Onyango will be expected to marshal the defense and he will most likely partner Wazito FC’s Johnstone Omurwa who skippered the team in the 1-0 friendly match win over South Sudan.

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