New Vision (Kampala)

Uganda: Balance of Power Shifting in Copa Qualifiers

THE balance of power is shifting against traditional COPA Coca-Cola giants as a new crop of teams has emerged in the on-going qualifiers.

Among the new kids on the block are Asinge SS, Busolwe Town View and Rock High that have taken over slots in Bukedi region.

In Mpigi region former athletics powerhouse Gombe SS stole the limelight alongside Light College Mubende and Real College Busunju at the expense of former giants Bulo Parents.

COPA Coca-cola organising committee chairman Raphael Bwire attributed the rise of 'village teams' to an inspired growth of new talent up country in the 20-year-old championship.

"Some of the new schools have invested in football by scouting good talent. This is a very positive development because most promising players from up country have gained bursaries in better schools," explained Bwire yesterday.

"Schools that have not invested money in football are likely to suffer. I'm sure the competition in the national finals will be very exciting," added.

The national championship is due on May 5-18 at Kigezi High School in Kabale.

Going against the tide

Against the tide, Kololo Secondary School and Lubiri SS are some of the schools making a return to the big stage with the hope of restoring old order in the tournament.

But former giants like Bishop McAllister College who ruled Ankole region are among the high profile casualties that fell out at the district qualifiers.

In Busoga region, Jinja SS, Jinja Parents Academy are out of the picture while Bukoyo SS, Tawheed Academy and Nawanyago SS have qualified. In Acholi region, Kitgum sides Monsignor Antonio and Kitgum High made the cut as former giants Sir Samuel Baker and Koch Goma SS went out at the district level.

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