Kenyan men finish sixth at Olympic qualifiers in South Africa

Kenyan midfielder Ican Ludiali in action against Nigeria.[Africa Hockey Federation]

The national men’s hockey team on Saturday finished sixth at the Africa Hockey Road to Paris 2024 qualifiers that will end on Sunday with hosts South Africa and Egypt fighting for the sole ticket to France next year.

The men’s and women’s teams that win the tournament will seal their berths at the Olympic Games Paris 2024.

The team that finishes as the runner-up in the men’s competition will get a second opportunity to qualify for the Olympics, at the FIH Hockey Olympic Qualifiers 2024.

Kenya who failed to make it past the preliminary group stages lost 4-3 to Nigeria in the fifth place classification playoff match in Pretoria on Saturday.

Last season’s Kenya Hockey Union (KHU) Premier League top goal scorer Festus Onyango, Cliffe Omari and Danstone Wabwire scored for Kenya in the defeat.

Kenya bowed out of the Paris Olympic Games qualifiers on Wednesday when they lost 3-1 to Ghana in a penultimate preliminary group match.

Kenya began the tournament with a 2-0 defeat in the hands of Egypt before defeating Namibia 1-0.

Their loss to Ghana left them third in Group B standings and out of Paris games.

On Thursday, they defeated Zimbabwe 2-1 in the fifth place semis playoffs to set a date with Nigeria.

Meanwhile, South Africa will face off against Egypt in the finals off the qualifiers on Sunday.

The hosts thrashed Ghana 7-0 in the semifinals on Friday while Egypt swept out Uganda 9-1 in the other semis.

Uganda and Ghana will play in the third place playoffs.

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