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Kenya’s CECAFA Challenge Cup ambitions ended by Burundi

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CECAFA Under-23 Challenge Cup

Kenya’s hopes of clinching the inaugural edition of the CECAFA Under-23 Challenge Cup ended in defeat after losing 4-2 on post match penalties to Burundi in the semi-finals staged at the Bahir Dar Stadium in Ethiopia on Tuesday.

The Emerging Stars, coached by Stanley Okumbi, lost two penalties while the Burundians scored all of their attempts. The game was forced to penalties after a 0-0 draw in regulation time.

Midfielder Vincent Wasambo saw his penalty saved by the keeper while David Odhiambo struck his effort over the bar. Kenya’s spot kicks were scored by Bernard Ochieng and Frank Odhiambo.

Issa Hakizimana, Asman Ndikumana, Adolphe Hakizimana and Franck Nduwimana all converted for the Burundi team.

The Burundians will now face off with Tanzania in Friday afternoon’s final.

“We are very happy to get to the final without suffering defeat. We need to keep focused and prepare well for the final game against the good team of Tanzania,” said Burundi’s coach Jimmy Ndayizeye.

Tanzania progressed to the final after beating South Sudan by a solitary goal. The South Sudanese scored into their own net in the 64th minute.

Kenya and South Sudan will face off in the bronze medal match.

-Tusker pooled with Azam in Club Championship-

Tusker FC players celebrate a goal in a past match

Meanwhile, the draw for the CECAFA Club Championship was done on Wednesday with Kenyan representatives Tusker FC pooled with Tanzania’s Azam and South Sudan’s Atlabara in Group B.

As Kenya’s representatives in next season’s CAF Champions League, the Football Kenya Federation settled on Tusker to represent Kenya in the Club Championship as this will also give them an opportunity to prepare against tough opposition.

However, the Kenyan champions are not yet to confirm their participation as they are also currently chasing the Kenyan Premier League title. The Club Championship is scheduled to take place from August 1-15, while the KPL will also be running.

Tusker are scheduled to kick off their campaign against Azam at their Chamazi Complex backyard on August 2. Uganda’s KCCA FC, Le Messager Ngozi of Burundi and Zanzibar’s KMKM SC will make up Group A while Tanzania’s Young Africans SC, Malawi’s Nyasa Big Bullets and Uganda’s Express FC will make up Group C.

Tusker midfielder Sempala leaves club –

Tusker FC captain Hashim Sempala

Meanwhile, Tusker FC have confirmed that midfielder Hashim Sempala, also their captain, has left the club at the expiry of his contract. The midfielder leaves with seven matches remaining in the season and Tusker firmly in the KPL title race.

“We want to thank Hashim for his services and what he has offered to the club. We had a mutual conversation where he informed us of his intention to seek greener pastures after the expiry of his contract and as a club we respected his decision,” said Tusker FC chairman Daniel Aduda, speaking to the club’s official website.

Sempala is said to be headed to Zambia where he will sign with top tier side Kabwe Warriors. He has been part of Tusker FC since joining from Bul FC in his native Uganda in the middle of the 2016 season.

“I am really thankful and happy for the time at Tusker FC. I want to thank the club, my teammates and the supporters for giving me a good time when I was here. I leave with great memories and hopefully I leave a good mark at the club,” Sempala said.

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