Lakeside vow to abide by Sports Disputes Tribunal orders

Domnic Adero of UoN Terror (left) and Lakeside's Kennedy Okumu in a past match. [Washington Onyango, Standard]

There is confusion and uncertainty in the Kenya Basketball Federation (KBF) Men’s Premier League after Sports Disputes Tribunal (SDT) nullified the 2021-2022 playoffs match between Kisumu Lakeside and Ulinzi Stars.

Lakeside are scheduled to play Zetech Titans in their opening match of the 2022 season but the club said they will not honour it.

Speaking to the Standard Sports, Lakeside Welfare Director Sila Guya said they have to respect SDT’s court order which forfeited their quarterfinals playoff defeat.

Former player Dennis Opiyo Achiego filed a case with the SDT arguing Ulinzi Warriors had fielded an ineligible player Valentine Nyakinda during their playoff tie against Lakeside.

According to the KBF rules and regulations, a player can only feature in the playoffs if he/she has played at least three games in the regular league. Nyakinda had not met that threshold but played anyway.

The John Ohaga-led SDT ruled that KBF violated the league and competition rules and thus declared the playoffs null and void. he tribunal also ruled that the results of the match between Ulinzi Warriors and Lakeside to be awarded to Lakeside.

Guya said the team is preparing for playoffs and not the 2022 season. He called for the 2022 season to be stopped until the previous season is finished.

“We cannot play because we are preparing for playoffs. The rule of law must be followed and as it stands, KBF is not following any regulations. We cannot play a league fixture when we have a serious matter and order from court,” said Guya.

“The 2022 season should not continue. For the sake of fair play, the federation should solve the matter by following SDT’s directive and arrange a new semifinal’s playoffs.”