Tanzania, Rwanda, Uganda
Kenya, Sudan, Djibouti,
Rwanda has been drawn in the toughest group for next month’s Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup in the Ugandan capital Kampala.
The Amavubi Stars are in group A along with bitter foes and tournament hosts Uganda, Tanzania mainland, Somalia and Zanzibar.
Defending champions, Sudan are in group B together with Kenya, Djibouti, Eritrea and Burundi. The draws for the ten-team tournament, scheduled for December 31 to January 31, were made yesterday in Kampala.
A total of 24 matches will be played throughout the two-week event at three grounds; Namboole, Nakivubo (both in Kampala) and Bugembe (Jinja).
Nakivubo will host the highest number of matches, 10, Begembe (eight) while Nambole six including Rwanda vs Uganda, Rwanda against Zanzibar, third place play off and the final.
Amavubi Stars, last year’s losing finalists, open their campaign on January 1, 2009 against the Uganda Cranes, a side they beat in last year’s semifinal enroute to the final where they lost to Sudan 4-2 on penalties. Full time ended in a dramatic 2-2 draw.
In group B, it will be a clash between the group’s two overwhelmingly best teams; Sudan and Kenya on the opening day’s second match. The tournament’s two worst teams, Eritrea and Djibouti meet in the opening game of this year’s edition.
Tournament sponsors, GTV will have live broadcasts for the last seven matches, among them Sudan vs Eritrea, Burundi vs Kenya (Jan. 8), Zanzibar vs Rwanda, Tanzania vs Uganda (Jan. 9) as well as the two semifinals and final.
The 2006 winners, Ethiopia are missing this year’s event through a Fifa ban.