Queens became the first team to book their ticket to this year’s COPA nationals after a swashbuckling display that saw them yank their opponents in different directions during the weekend’s Central region provincial finals.
After nicking a 1-0 win over a hard-fighting Cardinal FC, Queens were ruthless in their next two matches whitewashing both Tigithi Girls and Male Team 4-0 as they qualified for the national finals with a perfect record and without conceding a goal. Cardinal FC finished second after an identical 2-0 wins over Tigithi Girls and Male Team.
There was despair however for Maragwa’s Mount Kenya branch counterparts, Nanyuki United who finished tied second with VYSA Youth in the boys’ category. Angaza Boys from Aberdares took the honours winning all their matches to enter the national finals. Angaza won their opening match against VYSA 2-0 before picking apart Thunderbirds 4-0 and rounding up an impressive day with a similar score line win over Nanyuki.
Both Nanyuki and VYSA dismissed Thunderbirds 2-1 before the two shared a 2-2 impasse.
Meanwhile Northwest Rift duo Kitale Youth and Cherangany Boys were a class above their Northrift opponents as they took the two boys’ slots in the region’s provincial playoffs. The script was the same in the ladies’ category with Kitale Young Starlets and Cherangany taking the crown.
Kitale won all their three matches first beating Cherangany Boys 2-0 courtesy of first half goals from Elly Sainyi and Mwendwa Kennedy. Sainyi was again on target in Kitale’s 2-1 win over Kunji Santos who took the lead through Jackson Mureithi only for Charles Chege to net the equalizer. An identical score line win over Uprising Stars ensured the Northwest Rift outfit finished on maximum points. Cherangany took the remaining slot after beating Kunji and Uprising 2-0 and 1-0 respectively.
Kitale, the boys and ladies’ Cherangany teams as well as Kitale Young Starlets will now wait for the four teams who will qualify from the South Rift and Central Rift playoffs before the eight teams battle for national finals qualification.
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