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FKF Receives Online Backlash Following 5-0 Defeat To Mali

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FKF Receives Online Backlash Following 5-0 Defeat To Mali

It’s an all too familiar tale in Kenyan football – a huge backlash greeting a dismal performance from the national team – but on Friday, the harsh reaction to a 5-0 defeat to Mali in a 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifier carried a tone of hopelessness.

On Thursday night, Kenya’s dream of qualifying for the 2022 FIFA World Cup suffered a heavy blow when Ibrahima Kone’s first-half hat-trick inspired Group E leaders Mali to a crushing victory.

An early goal from Adama Traore and Moussa Doumbia’s 85th minute strike settled a lopsided contest played in the neutral venue of Morocco due to political upheaval in Mali.

The result leaves Kenya third in the group with two points and an unfavorable goal difference, with Uganda (five points), who beat Rwanda 1-0, leapfrogging them to second behind Mali (seven points).

On Sunday, Kenya welcome Mali to Nairobi with the home side needing to win all their remaining fixtures to have a sniff of clinching the only ticket available from Group E to make the third and final round of CAF qualifiers for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

The opening 0-0 and 1-1 draws to Uganda and Rwanda prompted stinging criticism in Kenya, with Football Kenya Federation (FKF) changing head coaches after the second game to bring in Turkey’s Engin Firat on a two-month contract.

“Nick Mwendwa appointed Engin Firat to coach Harambee Stars on a two-month contract. Firat was previously coach of Moldova, where he won 0 matches. Moldova is 75 places below Kenya in FIFA rankings. We need to start asking whether Nick is just laundering money with FKF,” television journalist Ferdinand Omondi wrote on Twitter.

Jacob Mulee (2020-21), Francis Kimanzi (2019-20), Sebastien Migne (2018-19), Stanley Okumbi (2016-17, 2018) and Paul Put (2017-18) have come before Firat since Mwendwa took over running the FKF in 2016.

The FKF boss was Kenya’s fourth biggest trending topic on Twitter on Friday morning, with most of the posts making uncomfortable reading for the administrator who promised to take Kenya to the 2022 World Cup finals upon being elected for his first term.

“Instead, the illegal entity is still allowed to handle our national teams and our monies from the consolidated fund without the requisite legal requirements in place,” local football analyst Francis Ngira remarked in a long Facebook post.

As news of the 5-0 defeat filtered, morning radio talk show discussions were dominated by discussion on what the country’s football needs, with most callers asking for the heads of Firat and the federation boss.

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Police Called In As Hired Goons Threaten Journalist Nyakundi Over Push For FKF Audit

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Police Called In As Hired Goons Threaten Journalist Nyakundi Over Push For FKF Audit

The Kenya Police have averted a possible attack on journalist Milton Nyakundi, who has been at the forefront of calling for an audit of financial probity at the troubled Football Kenya Federation (FKF).

The suspected goons tried to gain entry to a Press Conference convened by the journalist on Sunday, to push for a multi-agency inspection of FKF’s finances.

The hirelings arrived at the Ngong Hills Hotel along Ngong Road, Nairobi, causing a commotion as they sought to engage Nyakundi.

The Police, however, arrived in time to secure the journalist’s safety together with the hotel security.

“I am ok, thanks to the Police and the Hotel security team,” Nyakundi told Standard Sports on phone.

“I would like to commend the Police and hotel security for their quick response. That somebody sent the goons or even that they did it on their own tells you of something fishy in our game,” he said.

“I am not shaken at all to offer my voice for the good of the game. If nobody will speak on the rot in our game, which should be gainfully employing the youth, including these goons then I will,” Nyakundi said.

The journalist was the third respondent in a case that FKF had filed a case at the High Court of Kenya seeking to stop the Directorate of Criminal Investigations’ Banking Fraud unit from investigating it.

The High Court, however, ruled on Thursday that the DCI had the constitutional right to investigate the troubled football body.

Following the ruling, the Sports Cabinet Secretary Amb Amina Mohamed also directed the Sports Registrar to inspect the FKF books in accordance with Section 52(1) of the Sports Act (2013).

Nyakundi agrees with the directive but insists it should be a multi-agency exercise claiming that he had unearthed financial transactions that would interest KRA, the DCI, EACC and the Public Procurement Oversight Authority as well as the Auditor-General. 

“Without these agencies and the civil society, the intricate nature of the transactions could remain buried for good. Kenyans must demand for multi-agency approach,” Nyakundi said.

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Kenya Grabs Three Medals At Maiden Africa Championship

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Kenya grabs three medals at maiden Africa Championship

Kenya made her entry at the continental Duathlon stage in style after winning three medals in her maiden appearance at the 2021 Africa Duathlon Championship staged over the weekend in Namibia.

Though the sport is still relatively new in the country, 27-year-old Yvonne Ojijo led compatriot Christine Shambi to a one-two finish in the women’s 25-29 Female age group- Sprint.

The weekend event was not only historic to Kenya, but also Namibia who staged her first championship.

Ojijo’s victory came just a few minutes after Mungai Kairuki’s had grabbed third place in the junior men’s race.

Ojijo who was born just a year after Shambi (1993) clocked 01:28:46 while the latter timed 01:29:26 in a photo finish event held at the heart of Namibia’s Capital.

Mungai clocked 01:12:39, just .03 seconds behind Namibian Nicholas Du Plessis who clocked 1:09. 35 for second place.

Homeboy Johannes Van Der Wesrguizen took the first position after timing 01:02:56.

James Mwaura was the best placed Kenyan in the men’s elite race after settling for fourth. Namibian Joan-Paul Burger clocked 01:51:57 for first place, ahead of South African duo of Dylan Kruger (01:56:26) and Jonathan Benjamin who clocked 01:56:41.

Gabriel Ambeba, Eddy Odhiambo and Gideon Rutto were fifth, sixth and seven positions in that order.

Kenya however, had a relatively disappointing outing in the junior women’s race where participants cover 5km first run, bike 19.98 km and another 2.5 km second run. Vivian Hiller was the top-ranked Kenyan in position five while Terry Kariuki finished ninth.

That event that was also being held in Namibia for the first time, attracted over 50 participants mostly from Kenya, Namibia and South Africa that had the highest entries.

The NTF is hoping to see at least 150 entries, while athletes from across Africa are expected to attend and compete for the title of African duathlon champion of 2021.

Kenya was making her duathlon debut at the continental stage.

For Kenyan athletes, attention will now shift to the African Cup National Championship (sprint) to be held in Mombasa on November 6.

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