When this year's Rift Valley secondary school Term One games start today at Nakuru Boys High, two teams will no doubt be the clear favourites in boys' basketball: Laiser Hill Academy and Menengai High School.
Laiser Hill, who were transferred to the Rift Valley Region from Metropolitan, are in Pool C with Uasin Gishu High, St Joseph’s from Trans Nzoia, and Kapenguria Boys from West Pokot.
Menengai are in Pool B alongside St Patrick's Iten from Elgeyo Marakwet and defending champions, Kapsabet Boys, from Nandi.
Pool C has Lodwar High (Turkana), Baringo High School, Good Shepherd from Samburu, and St Augustin from Laikipia, while Pool D has Kabianga (Kericho), Mulot (Bomet), and Narok High School.
Rift Valley Secondary Schools Sports Association Secretary-General Reuben Kirwa Koech said the games would involve 14 counties and that more than 3,000 competitors would battle in the four-day championships.
“These games will mirror what used to be. KSSSA revised the former boundaries, which now brings back the previous 14 counties. At the end of the games, I know we will produce some very brilliant teams ahead of the national championships,” he said yesterday.
The games, which will include girls' basketball, rugby, hockey, and indoor games, will be opened this morning by Rift Valley Regional Coordinator of Education Mary Gaturu.
In girls’ hockey, defending champions Kapkolei are tipped to retain the title. They are in Pool A with Hill School of Uasin Gishu and St Teresa Tartar from West Pokot.
Pool B has Ole Tipis (Narok), Mulot (Bomet), and Tengecha (Kericho), while Pool C has St Joseph (Trans Nzoia), Entarara (Kajiado), and Pemwai (Baringo). Pool D has Gateru (Laikipia), Kapkenda (Elgeyo Marakwet), and Njoro Girls of Nakuru.
A two-day workshop for the referees who will officiate in the championships started on Sunday.
“This workshop has been organised to ensure that all the referees are taken through the latest rules in the different disciplines ahead of the championships,” Kirwa added.