Kisumu Day fire warning shots as battle to replace St Anthony's Kitale begins

Kisumu Day's Veron Okeyo (center) in action against Agoro Sare during the Nyanza Region football finals.[Washington Onyango,Standard]

Kisumu Day High School football team is looking forward to ending their eight-year finals drought when they kick off their journey to secure a ticket to the East Africa games today.

The Nyanza Region football champions who saw off Homa Bay giants Agoro Sare 2-0 last Sunday to qualify for the nationals are set for an epic battle in Nakuru after being pooled against Central region heavyweights Olbolsat, Coastal kings Serani and Rift Valley giant slayers Kabarnet Boys High School in Group B.

The Kisumu County champions will be hoping to be the new champions of football after defending champions St Anthony’s Boys failed to progress past the Rift Valley regionals. Instead, Kabarnet Boys High School from Baringo County scrapped through.

This leaves a vacuum that Nyanza region giants Kisumu Day are eager to fill; to be the new national football champions.

Kisumu Day football coach Andrew Aroka is confident his boys can rise to the occasion once again by advancing through to the knockout stages.

Speaking to Standard Sports, Aroka said they have worked out their mistakes over the three days they have had to prepare for the nationals and is looking forward to winning all his pool matches.

“The nationals is where the big boys show up and we are ready to show Kenyans that Kisumu Day is the team to beat this year. It has been a long time calling that has evaded us previously but we are a better side now,” said Aroka.

“Our goal is to win our opening match and then build from there. We need a positive start and we are prepared for anyone.”

The former Kisumu All Stars coach said they will of cause respect their opponents but they have set a goal to get to Tanzania from the East Africa games.

“The main objective in Nakuru is not only to win the national title but secure a ticket to East Africa. Nothing beats playing against the best from Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania. I believe the goals will come and we will reign supreme,” added Aroka who will be banking on Dan Omalla, the brother to Gor Mahia’s teenage striker Benson Omalla.

Kisumu Day are not new on the national stage and will be hoping for an improved show after bowing out at the group stages when the games were last held in 2019.

Their best performance was reaching the final in 2014, before losing to 12-time champions Kakamega High School. Olbolsat are also another strong side having reached the finals in 2018.

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