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Archive for the ‘Kenya: Sports’ Category

Kenya drops to 123 in Fifa soccer rankings

Posted by Administrator on February 18, 2012

Harambee Stars have been inactive for the past two months after missing out on the African Cup of Nations won by Zambia a week ago. The national team returns to action on February 28 when  they face Togo in a 2013 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.

Stars  opponents, Togo went six positions up to place to 94. After winning the  African Cup of Nations for the first time against Ivory Coast on Sunday,  Zambia were the highest African climbers, breaking into the top 50 for  the first time to 43.

Other beneficiaries were Africa Cup of  Nations co-hosts Gabon who moved a place up to position 45. Africa Cup  third finishers Mali climbed 25 places up to 44.

Despite losing out in  the final, Ivory Coast climbed three places to 15 to retain their top  position in Africa. Ghana are second after a three place rise, despite a  disappointing outing at the continental showcase.

Former continental  champions Egypt and Nigeria, Senegal, Cape Verde and Niger were the five  biggest continental losers after falling to 25, 11, 25, 11 and 13  places respectively. Spain retained their top position in the world.

Source: http://www.starafrica.com/en/football/news/article/view/kenya-drops-to-123-in-fifa-soccer-rankin-218910.html

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Kenya wins the Wellington bowl title

Posted by Administrator on February 5, 2011

Kenya has secured her first International Rugby Board Sevens World Series points of the season by beating Tonga 19-0 to win the Bowl title at the New Zealand Sevens tournament in Wellington.

The national team overturned their poor show on the first day of the third leg of the IRB circuit series in New Zealand where they lost all their group matches to Samoa, Tonga and Australia, by giving a fantastic show on the final day, winning all their three matches in the Bowl competition to lift the trophy. 

Having gone past Canada 19-14 in the quarterfinals and seeing off Scotland 15-12 in the semifinal, Kenya once again met group rivals Tonga in the Bowl final. Tonga had beaten Kenya

17-10 in the group stages, but the Benjamin Ayimba led squad was keen on revenge.

Captain Humphrey Kayange led by example opening the try scoring sheet for Kenya, sending the match into the break with a 7-0 lead. 

Sensational Sydney Ashioya, who made a comeback to the team after missing the first two legs of the new season, set the Kenyan crowd in New Zealand into cheers successfully scoring the second try.

Kenya was not done yet as Collins Injera found the pacy Biko Adema on the sideline who then put the Bowl beyond Tonga’s reach with the third try. 

Kenya now heads to Las Vegas for the fourth leg motivated with four points and captain Kayange believes the large crowd in USA may just be what Kenya needs to secure even better results.

Hosts New Zealand clinched the main title after beating England 29-14 in the final.

USA won the Shield title after securing a 19-12 victory over France, while Fiji settled for the Plate title after beating South Africa 26-12 in the final.

Source: http://www.kbc.co.ke/news.asp?nid=68782

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NBC Sports and Universal Sports To Broadcast HSBC Sevens World Series Live For First Time

Posted by Administrator on January 13, 2011

Kenyan fans cheering the Kenya National Rugby Team at a previous tournament in US

Kenyan fans cheering the Kenya National Rugby Team at a previous tournament in US

New York, NY – NBC Sports and Universal Sports will broadcast eight hours of live coverage of the 2011 HSBC Sevens World Series event in Las Vegas the weekend of February 12-13. This marks the first time that the tournament has had live television coverage in the United States. The HSBC Sevens World Series is played throughout the world at seven other venues: Dubai, South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong, London and Scotland.

“Rugby Sevens is an exciting, fast-paced sport that is growing in global popularity, participation, and interest,” said NBC Sports executive vice president Jon Miller. “NBC had the privilege of broadcasting the inaugural 2010 Rugby Sevens Collegiate Championship and is excited to expand its coverage of rugby by bringing the HSBC Sevens World Series to live network television for the first time.”

Broadcast Schedule:

  • NBC Sports: Live coverage, 3:30-6:00pm ET on February 12; 4:30-6:00pm ET on February 13
  • Universal Sports: Live coverage, 2:00-3:30pm ET on February 12; 2:00-4:30pm ET on February 13
  • NBC Mobile: Live simulcast, 3:30-6:00pm ET on February 12; 4:30-6:00pm ET on February 13
  • Hulu.com: Full-event coverage available on-demand in HD quality video

Rugby Sevens features seven players per team playing on the same size pitch as a 15’s match and offers non-stop action where speed, high scoring and athleticism dominate the competition. The format allows for constant entertainment with each match split into two seven-minute halves and a new match starting about every 20 minutes. Rugby Sevens will be an Olympic sport starting in 2016.

“The global appeal of rugby is undeniable and this tournament is known for featuring the best-of-the-best in the rugby world,” said Dan Lyle, Tournament Director of USA 7’s Rugby. “We look forward to sharing the electric atmosphere of the HSBC Sevens World Series with millions of viewers as we take this exciting step for the sport.”

Last year’s tournament saw a championship battle of the tournament’s two undefeated teams, Samoa and New Zealand, with Samoa ultimately winning, 33-12. Samoa will return to defend its title in 2011, along with teams from the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, England, France, Canada, South Africa and Kenya to name a few.

The Cosmopolitan has been confirmed as the official hotel partner for the event, with additional hotel partners including the Palms, Tropicana, Hard Rock and the Boyd Group.

The HSBC Sevens World Series will begin on Saturday, February 12 and will conclude with the championship game on Sunday, February 13 at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada. The event will feature teams from 16 countries competing in the fourth leg of the Series.

To purchase tickets for the event visit http://www.usasevens.com.

About USA Sevens:
USA Sevens LLC owns and operates America’s premier rugby events, the Las Vegas HSBC Sevens World Series and the USA 7’s Collegiate Rugby Championship Invitational. Held annually, the Las Vegas HSBC Sevens World Series is one of the eight international stops in the HSBC Sevens World Series. The Series sponsor is HSBC bank. With an attendance of over 50,000 during the two day event, it is the largest annual rugby event in North America and one of the fastest growing rugby events in the world.

On Thursday and Friday prior to the event there will be the Las Vegas Invitational Rugby Tournament with over 120 colleges, highs schools, clubs and international teams competing for both trophies and cash rewards.

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Joy as Kenya youths beat track bigwigs USA

Posted by Administrator on July 27, 2010

David Mutinda Mutua of Kenya, celebrates finishing first in the 800 Metres Final on day seven of the 13th IAAF World Junior Championships at the Stade Moncton 2010 Stadium on July 25, 2010 in Moncton, Canada. PHOTO/AFP

David Mutinda Mutua of Kenya, celebrates finishing first in the 800 Metres Final on day seven of the 13th IAAF World Junior Championships at the Stade Moncton 2010 Stadium on July 25, 2010 in Moncton, Canada. PHOTO/AFP

On the final day of the World Junior Athletics Championships that ended in Moncton Canada, USA were all packing their bags, having won the overall title.

Both Kenya and USA were tied on gold — six apiece. But when David Mutinda Mutua returned first after one minute 46.41 seconds in the men’s 800m final, Kenya had just snatched the title, a third time in the championship’s history.

“We are very happy with the runners,” said an elated Isaiah Kiplagat, the Athletics Kenya chairman.

Retaining steeplechase

The event will be remembered for the retaining of the 3000m flat and 3000m steeplechase by Mercy Cherono and Jonathan Ndiku.

Mercy made history to become the first woman to retain a World Junior championship title over the 3000m distance when she earned Kenya its first medal on the first day.

Ndiku, 19, was a superb winner of the men’s 3000m steeplechase final, clocking 8:23.48. He became the first man to win back-to-back steeplechase titles in the World Junior race and his country’s 12th title.

“This race is our culture. It’s a Kenyan race,” he said.

Cherono not only clinched her fourth junior medal in youth and junior championship, but did it in style to set the world’s fastest time this season over the age group category — 8:55.07.

Source: Daily Nation

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Semenya Welcome to Run in Nairobi

Posted by Administrator on April 13, 2010

Nairobi — Caster Semenya, who came under the spotlight over gender determination and currently the world 800 metres champion, is welcome to run in Nairobi during the Senior African Athletics Championship in July.

David Okeyo, the championship’s Chief Executive Officer, has rolled out a red carpet to receive Semenya in Nairobi in July, which will be her first major race since controversy clouded her young career at last year’s Berlin’s World Championships.

“Though everyone is waiting for her case to be decided by IAAF, we (Local Organising Committee) have no problem having her run here. We will be thrilled to have her as it will add another spark in the championship,” said Okeyo.

Semenya has vowed to return to athletics at a meeting in Zaragoza, Spain on June 24.

This is almost a month before Kenya host Africa’s best talent at Nyayo National Stadium for a five-day track and field championship where the continent will select its final athletes for the World Cup set for Split City on Croatia in September.

Okeyo however, noted that South Africa is among the countries yet to send in their interim list of athletes.

“It makes it hard for me to know if they will come or not,” he said.

Source-Daily Nation

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Mariga set to join Man City

Posted by Administrator on January 29, 2010

Hot property: Parma and Kenya international midfielder McDonald Mariga

Hot property: Parma and Kenya international midfielder McDonald Mariga

Parma have accepted a €10 million offer (about Sh722 million) from Manchester City for Kenyan international McDonald Mariga, according to reports from Italy and England.

Mariga had been linked with Italian champions Inter but Parma sporting director, Pietro Leonardi, apparently met with City on Thursday.

He was able to convince the English club over 22-year-old Mariga’s €10m fee during a series of talks which untangled the move.

Once the transfer is compelete, Mariga will become Kenya’s richest sportsman and the first ever to play in the English Premier League.

City turned to Mariga after seeing negotiations stall with Real Madrid in their attempts to sign Fernando Gago. City were ready to bid £6million for Mariga, according to reports in Italy, and could offer Valeri Bojinov as part of the deal.

Bulgaria striker Bojinov, 23, has scored four goals in 15 appearances since joining Parma on loan at the start of the season and he is keen to stay in Italy.

Harry Redknapp tried to sign Mariga for Portsmouth from Swedish side Helsingborgs three years ago, but work permit issues scuppered the deal.

But the 6ft 2in marauding midfielder has cemented himself as a regular at Parma, winning many admirers after joining the club in 2007.

Signed four-year deal

Mariga would be an alternative to Gago, who was keen to sign City only for Madrid to block his exit.

Mariga started his playing career at Pipeline FC. He was a member of the Kamukunji High School ‘Golden Boys’, which also included Dennis Oliech (Auxerre), that won two consecutive national championships in 2002 and 2003.

The central midfielder went to Sweden in 2005 to play for third Division side Enköpings SK. After only one season at ESK, he signed for Helsingborgs IF before the 2006 season. His success at Olympia was immediate.

Following initial interest from Redknapp, Mariga looked set to sign for the Premier League team, but work permit issues held up the deal which was supposed to have cost around €2.7 million.

He moved to the Serie A club Parma on loan in August 2007. Mariga agreed to a four year deal to keep him at Parma for four years until the end of June 2012, after the club paid a transfer fee for €1.94 million. The deal was brokered by former Swede great Martin Dahlin.

Mariga played 35 times for Parma in the Serie B during the 2008-2009 season scoring three time to help them back to Serie A for the 2009-2010 season.

Elsewhere, Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has hailed Wayne Rooney as a “world class” player ahead of his side’s crucial title showdown with Arsenal.

The 23–year–old England striker netted his 21st goal of the season against Manchester City on Wednesday night to book United’s place in the Carling Cup final, just days after his four–goal salvo against Hull.

And ahead of the showdown with old foes Arsenal, Ferguson was left to drool over Rooney’s latest heroics. “It was much better than Saturday,” Ferguson said of Rooney, ho played up front on his own.

“I know he scored four goals but his control leading the line and his link-up play was fantastic. Overall it was a wonderful performance. World class.”

Arsenal, who currently sit in third place in the league ladder, will vault over United with a win, but their overall title ambitions suffered a setback against Aston Villa on Wednesday night.

The Gunners were held to a 0–0 draw by Martin O’Neill’s Champions League hopefuls, and they lost Eduardo and Thomas Vermaelen to injury.

Wenger, though, was pleased to see his side come through a physical encounter at Villa Park, something they have not always been able to do.

“We didn’t always find our passing game (against Villa),” he said. “They play a very efficient English game with long balls and very physical.

“Although Villa were physical, it was not a dirty game. It was a committed game. It was a fair game but not dirty at all. For me, it was physical in a positive way.”

Source: Daily Nation. Photo from Daily Mail-UK

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Kenya’s sole competitor Boit aims for respectability

Posted by Administrator on January 27, 2010

Philip Boit of Kenya skies during the qualification for the men's cross country 10km classical race at the Nordic World Championships in Liberec February 18, 2009.

Philip Boit of Kenya skies during the qualification for the men's cross country 10km classical race at the Nordic World Championships in Liberec February 18, 2009.

By Jack Oyoo

NAIROBI (Reuters) – Kenya’s sole competitor at next month’s winter Olympics, cross country skier Philip Boit, has improved his times since his last three Games and wants to show that his snow-starved country can produce respectable results.

Boit, who in 1998 became the first Kenyan to compete at a winter Games and finished last in his race, will ski in the 15km cross country event at the February 12-28 Vancouver Games.

“I want to finish my race in a respectable position before considering retirement. My past finishes have not been quite good but I am determined to change this in Vancouver,” Boit, 38, told Reuters before flying out to Canada on Tuesday.

“I trained well in Finland last year and even took part in the world championships and I hope for a better finish this time.”

Over the years, he has improved his personal bests for 10km to 25 minutes 10 seconds from 30:31 and 39:15 for the 15km, down from 47:26.

The only snow in Kenya is at the peak of Mount Kenya so Boit has had to adapt his training to his surroundings, running morning and evening rather than skiing when he is at home.

Originally a middle-distance runner, Boit switched to skiing in 1996 after American sports apparel manufacturer Nike started a programme with the National Olympic Committee of Kenya to develop winter sports.

On his Olympic debut at the 1998 Games in Nagano, Boit finished last in the 10km cross country.

“I was not disappointed because although I was last, I finished the race. (Norwegian eight-times Olympic gold medallist) Bjorn Daehlie commended my effort,” he said.

This encouraged him so much that he named one of his sons after the Norwegian cross country skier.

The Nike sponsorship, which enabled him to train in Finland, soon dried up and he had to fund his own training. He was back at Salt Lake City in 2002 and Turin in 2006, improving on his previous result but still finishing near the back of the field.

-Reuters

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Tiger who? Kenyan golfer walks his own path

Posted by Administrator on October 28, 2009

Wednesday 28 October 2009
Simon Mburu, the Kenyan who will tee off in the 2009 Laurance Scrap Metal WA PGA Championship at Bunbury Golf Club
Incomprehensible as it may seem, but not every professional golfer in the world has heard of Tiger Woods.

Simon Mburu may be able to hit the ball 300m with his driver but still lives in a mud hut with his family in Njoro, a village 170km from Nairobi.

Until a chance encounter with NSW professional Michael Etherington, he had never heard of the American superstar.

Mburu was doing what he was best at – playing golf around the nine-hole course where his father works – when he was spotted by the Australian who was visiting Africa for a family reunion.

Etherington and Mburu, 24, are in the field for the Laurance Scrap Metals WA PGA Championship at Bunbury Golf Club this week.

Etherington said the Kenyan looked like one of the young caddies trying to earn a living carrying bags until he saw him strike the ball.

“He was longer off the tee than many professionals and was Kenya’s leading amateur at the time, playing off a handicap of plus two,” he said.

“He had a set of clubs which were 45 years old. I’d never seen anyone play with clubs that old. He was completely self-taught.”

Mburu had only one ball so if he lost it in a hazard, he had to look for it until he found it.

Just about every piece of golf equipment Mburu now owns was given to him by Etherington. Life has not been easy for Mburu who has been caught up in tribal conflicts. He will also travel to Melbourne for qualifying for next month’s Australian Masters where Woods is the big drawcard.

Source: WWW.PGA.ORG

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Wanjiru wins Chicago Marathon

Posted by Administrator on October 12, 2009

Sammy Wanjiru of Kenya celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the mens 2009 Chicago Marathon in Chicago, Sunday, Oct. 11, 2009.(AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) (Nam Y. Huh - AP)

Sammy Wanjiru of Kenya celebrates as he crosses the finish line to win the men's 2009 Chicago Marathon in Chicago, Sunday, Oct. 11, 2009.(AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) (Nam Y. Huh - AP)

Smiling and waving, Sammy Wanjiru of Kenya was already celebrating his victory in the Chicago Marathon as he approached the finish line. He had no idea a $100,000 bonus was still hanging in the balance.

Wanjiru won the marathon with the fastest time on American soil, finishing in 2 hours, 5 minutes, 41 seconds, and collected a big bonus check on a bone-chilling Sunday morning.

With temperatures in the low- to mid-30s, Wanjiru turned in the best time in the U.S. and beat by one second the mark set by Khalid Khannouchi in Chicago in 1999. He got $75,000 for winning and $100,000 for the course record, although he nearly cost himself that bonus by waving to the crowd as he approached the finish.

Had he finished a second later and not broken the record, he would have received an extra $75,000 instead for posting one of the three fastest finishes in the race’s history.

“I was very happy to see I’m the winner,” Wanjiru said. “I was very happy. I was very happy to take $100,000 by one second.”

He had no idea how close he was to the course record as he headed north up Columbus Drive to the finish line, and he wouldn’t have been in such a great mood had that celebration cost him. It didn’t, so he could smile about it.

Abderrahim Goumri of Morocco made a late push to finish second in 2:06:04, with Kenya’s Vincent Kipruto in third (2:06:08).

Russia’s Liliya Shobukhova, who finished third at the London Marathon earlier this year, was a winner in her second marathon and finished all alone in 2:25:56. London winner Irina Mikitenko of Germany (2:26:31) finished second to clinch the 2008-09 World Marathon Majors championship, and defending champion Lidiya Grigoryeva of Russia was third (2:26:47).

American Deena Kastor, the Chicago winner in 2005, placed sixth (2:28:50) in her first marathon since breaking her right foot in the Beijing Olympics.

“It’s very exciting,” the 21-year-old Shobukhova said. “It’s a great surprise for me.”

Nearly 35,000 runners braved the cold and started the race, and Wanjiru and the leaders took a shot at the world record of 2:03:59 set by Haile Gebrselassie of Ethiopia at Berlin last year. They fell off during the latter stages, but the course record, remained for the taking.

After fellow Kenyan Patrick Ivuti dropped from the lead in the 16th mile, Wanjiru moved to the front and ran with countrymen Vincent Kipruto and Charles Munyeki before pulling away.

He didn’t seem to be bothered too much by the cold, which was a sharp contrast from the previous two races in Chicago.

In 2007, with high humidity and temperatures soaring into the high 80s, the race was stopped after about four hours — but not before a man with a heart disorder died. Hundreds of runners collapsed or vomited and 184 went to hospitals.

Last year, there were no major incidents, although the conditions were far from ideal. Temperatures went from 65 at the start to the high 70s while the elite runners were still on the course, before reaching 84 in late morning. Seventy-six runners had to go to hospitals.

The heat havoc came after a scary scene unfolded at the end of the 2006 race, when champion Robert Cheruiyot of Kenya slipped and banged his head as he crossed the finish line.

There were no obvious mishaps this time, Wanjiru’s waving near the finish notwithstanding. It was another big win and another big day for a runner who was raised by a single mother who farmed for a living, and was discovered by a Japanese writer scouting Kenyans seven years ago.

He moved to Japan at age 15 to study and train, setting a course that has led to him becoming one of the top marathon runners, one who’s eyeing the world record. Pacing himself would be a good idea.

“He can do very good things at the marathon but he should learn,” Goumri said. “It’s a new experience for them, the marathon. You should have two, three years (running) marathons. Then, you can do the world record.”

On the women’s side, it was an emotional day for Mikitenko.

The two-time London Marathon champion pulled out of the world championship in Germany in August after her father died. With her mother celebrating a birthday Sunday, she turned in a solid performance that came up just short of Shobukhova.

So did Kastor, who is trying to re-establish herself at 36 and set a course toward the 2012 London Olympics — something she might not be doing had things gone better in Beijing.

“I feel really good about where I am right now,” said Kastor, the bronze medalist at the 2004 Athens Games. “My day fell a little short, but I’m still pretty ecstatic by how my body has held up and how strong I’ve gotten over the past few months.”

http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2009/10/11/sports/s125351D87.DTL

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