17 November 2003

Kenya: Volleyball Kasarani Hosts Play-Offs

Nairobi — The three-day Kenya Volleyball Federation (KVF) play-offs begin on Friday at Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani.

The men's competition will involve the top four teams from the regular season Ð KCB, GSU, Ulinzi, Telkom Nyeri Ð while the women's competition will involve the top two Ð Kenya Pipeline, Telkom.

Men champions GSU open their title defence against rivals Ulinzi at 11 am. The first match of the post-season will, however, be played between former champions KCB and Telkom Nyeri.

KCB have shown good form this season and their coach Jackton Omukani is cautiously optimistic.

"Any of the three clubs KCB, GSU and Ulinzi can win this league on their day. But if we train right this week we will reclaim the trophy."

KCB will rely on Paul Bitok, Patrick Owino, Peter Gitonga and Ben Musumba. David Lungaho, who earlier this season announced his retirement, may also feature for KCB

The best-of-three match up between perennial rivals Pipeline and Telkom, the undisputed club queens of Kenyan volleyball, makes for an interesting battle with a tinge of vengeance.

Telkom topped the league last season ahead of Pipeline and refused to participate in the play-offs charging they were the league winners.

KVF insisted they had to play and proceeded to hand the cup to Pipeline when Telkom failed to appear for the play-offs. Now they get a chance to show who the real champions are.

Charges on all the days is Sh30.

"Winners will receive some prize money, the details of which we are still working on," KVF chairman Charles Nyaberi said.

Winners of the league will represent Kenya in the African Club championship while the runners up will feature in the Africa Cup of Cup.

The third placed team plays in the East and Central Africa Club championship.

After the play-offs team will move to Mombasa for the Cereal Cup to be played from November 29 to 30.

The volleyball season ends on December 7 when the two-day Inter-Provincial championship concludes in Kisumu.

Nyaberi has announced that the national women's team assembles on November 30 at MISC to begin preparations for the Olympic Games qualifiers.

The team will be under new coach Abdul Muge and will be wanting to redeem themselves after surrendering the All Africa Games title to Nigeria and also failing to qualify for the World Cup.

Play-off fixtures

Friday - KCB v Telkom Nyeri (9am), GSU v Ulinzi (11am), Pipeline v Telkom (1 pm), Telkom Nyeri v Ulinzi (3pm), KCB v GSU (5pm).

Saturday - GSU v Telkom Nyeri (9am), Ulinzi v KCB (11am), Telkom v Pipeline (1pm), KCB v Nyeri (3pm), GSU v Ulinzi (5pm).

Sunday -Telkom Nyeri v Ulinzi (9am), KCB v GSU (11am), Pipeline v Telkom (1pm), GSU v Telkom Nyeri (3pm), Ulinzi v KCB (5pm).

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