Kenyan girls dream big ahead of ISF World Cup final

Kenya's Delphine Ayesa (left) in action during their ISF football World Cup match against Ghana in Dalian, China. [ISF]

Kenya will on Sunday lock horns with hosts China in the girls’ final match of the International Schools Sports Federation (ISF) football World Cup in Dalian, China.

The Kenyans girls will be seeking to extend their fairytale run that has seen them shove world football powerhouses England, Germany, Brazil and African compatriots Ghana out of the way to inch closer to the title. It has been a memorable debut as they remain unbeaten despite being newbies on the global stage.

Buoyed by their brilliant performance, captain Fridah Sharon said they will be looking to end the competition on a high note.

“We have strictly followed our coach’s instructions and played as a unit which has enabled us to make it to the final. Our main objective is to take the trophy home and make every effort that was made to get us here count,” Sharon said.

She added that featuring at the global show for the first time their strategy has been to study their opponents in the first minutes of the game then adapt a formation as well as a technical approach.

“Right from the group stage we were the underdogs and the teams underrated us. We capitalised on that and took time to study our opponents’ game after which we would play our hearts out because we had nothing to lose," said Sharon.

Kenya thrashed Brazil's Samba girls 3-1 in the semis to book a date with China Two who eliminated fellow Chinese side China One. Goal poacher Elizabeth Mideva, Clotilda Auma and Mitchel Waithera scored a goal each against the Brazilians. 

Mideva attributed her good form to exposure and fitness gained in tournaments, especially the trip to Spain.

“I work very hard to improve my game and together with my teammates have played in various tournaments. We have done well so far and our aim is to play well and win the title," said Mideva.

The Kenyan boys were eliminated at the group stage after finishing second in Group G after losing 2-0 to Uganda. They had beaten Benin 2-1 and Taipei 4-2 before falling to the Ugandans. 

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