21 November 2012

Kenya: Wanga Out of Squad

Alan Wanga has withdrawn from the Harambee Stars squad leaving tomorrow for the Cecafa senior Challenge Cu tournament which kicks off in Kampala, Uganda on Saturday.

The experienced international who has scored eight times in his 26 appearances for the national team, aggravated an ankle injury on Saturday in the Football Kenya Federation Cup semi final clash with Gor Mahia.

The injury has dogged him for most of the season hence his decision to opt out of James Nandwa's team. "I have an ankle sprain and I was advised to let it heal slowly so that I do not risk worsening the injury.

"I am disappointed because I would have loved to be part of the team to Uganda. However, we have a good squad than can do well and end our long wait for victory in the tournament. I wish them all the best though," said the AFC Leopards striker who was among the more experienced players in the Kenyan team.

Nandwa immediately moved to replace him with his Leopards stand-in Victor Ochieng who was a member of the Stars squad that was eliminated in the group stages of last year's tourney in Tanzania.

Ochieng scored the winning goal on his international debut in the match against Ethiopia. Joining Wanga on the sidelines is Tusker skipper Joseph Shikokoti who on Monday complained of a tight hamstring and has now been replaced in the squad by teammate David "Cheche" Ochieng.

"Shikokoti complained of a hamstring injury so we thought it would be better not to risk aggravating his injury by taking him to the tournament.

We have made the replacement quickly in order to continue our preparations without too much upheaval,"explained Nandwa. The Cecafa squad as well as the championship for African nations (CHAN) team squad being overseen by national team coach Henri Michel, a Frenchman.

He is now set to remain with the Michel squad that is preparing to face Burundi next month. Nandwa is expected to whittle down the 25 man team to the 20 who will feature in the Ugandan showpiece.

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