Cecafa Challenge Cup starts, Amavubi not in action until tomorrow
Kenya v Zambia
THIS year’s Orange Cecafa Challenge Cup kicks off this afternoon when Kenya’s Harambee Stars clash with Zambia, one of two guest teams in the competition.
Kenya, who are hosting the event for the first time in 15 years have scores to settle after narrowly missing out on a ticket to next year’s Africa Nations Cup in Angola.
The East Africans lost out to Nigeria 2-3 to finish bottom of their group.
On the other hand, Rwanda’s Amavubi Stars, who are drawn in Group B, start their campaign tomorrow with a fairly easy tie against minnows Somalia.
The 3 O’clock kick-off match will be played at Nyayo stadium.
Amavubi, who are under the control of stand in coach Eric Nshimiyimana wrapped up their build up campaign in style after a 2-0 victory over AS Kigali.
The result was a great relief for Nshimiyimana following a barren campaign in the just ended 2010 Nations Cup qualifiers where the team scored one goal in six games.
During the AS Kigali tie, Amavubi’s goals were scored by Amin Mwizerwa and Djamal Mwiseneza.
In Kenya, Mwizerwa and Eric Serugaba, a late replacement for Abbas Rassou are expected to lead Amavubi’s attack with Haruna Niyonzima, Jean Baptista Mugiraneza ‘Migi’, Jean Claude Iranzi and Djamar Mwizerwa playing behind the pair.
Though the attack has little experience, Nshimiyimana believes that it is a great opportunity for the pair to showcase their potential and prove any doubters wrong.
“They may be short of experience at this stage but they have very good support from the likes of Haruna and Migi-two experienced players,” he reasoned.
As for the defense and midfield, the former Amavubi star has nothing to worry about.
After tomorrow’s tie, Amavubi, who have won the regional event once-1999, play Eritrea before winding up their group campaign with a tough game against Cosafa champions Zimbabwe.
The tournament, which was won by Uganda last year, will be jointly held at Nyayo national stadium (Nairobi) and Mumias Complex (Western Kenya).
Amavubi Team: Jean Claude Ndoli, Jean Luc Ndayishimiye, Emery Mvuyekure, Jean Baptista Mugiraneza, Haruna Niyonzima, Donatien Tuyizere, Aimable Rucogoza, Kalisa Mao, Yusuf Ndayishimiye, Albert Ngaboyisibo, Didier Kouin Didier, Djamar Mwiseneza, Abdul Karim Gashugi, Jean Claude Iranzi, Tumaine Ntamuganga, Amani Uwiringiyimana, Amin Mwizerwa, Egide Rutayisire and Eric Serugaba.