Last updated 1 year ago | By Ernest Ndunda
Former national secondary schools girls’ hockey champions St John’s Kaloleni of Coast region will be seeking redemption when national secondary schools term one games start in Mombasa next week.
In 2014, St John’s Kaloleni became the first girls’ hockey team in Coast region to win the national title and are keen to bounce back to victory.
“We shall be playing at home and we will not let down our fans. It is an opportunity to redeem our status at home,” said Austin Otieno, the team coach.
“The last time we made it to the national games was in 2016 but we were bundled out in the preliminary round on goal difference despite winning two matches. Our focus this time round is to win the title,” he said.
Otieno said he has prepared his team well after winning the Coast region title a fortnight ago. “We want to repeat the 2014 performance, which also saw us reach the finals of East Africa secondary schools games.”
“We are in a tough pool and that does not scare us. Any team that has made it to the national games is equally good,” he said.
St Johns Kaloleni are in pool A alongside Eastern representatives St Joseph of Kibwezi, Nyamira Girls of Nyanza and St Mary’s of Rift Valley.
Otieno said they must be wary of Nyamira Girls who eliminated former champions Shinyolo at the region level.
Hadiya Ali, the St John's Kaloleni captain, said she was optimistic they will perform well.
"By beating immediate former Coast girls hockey champions Bura Girls at the Coast region level was an added advantage and we are focused on performing well,” she said.
Ali said they have been undergoing rigorous training and the current hot weather conditions experienced in Coast might favour them.
Coast will present two hockey teams since North Eastern region does not have a team in the discipline.