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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Kenya to send second string team to inaugural East Africa games

By John Kwoba NAIROBI, (Xinhua) -- Kenya will send second string national teams to the inaugural East Africa Community Games, which will be hosted in Bujumbura, Burundi from Aug 16-28.

Volleyball, football and athletics will be some of the teams that will enter weakened sides as their senior teams focus on other global championships.

The championships will mimic the Africa Games and the Olympics as the region seeks to have their own conglomeration of top athletes to help foster the spirit of brotherhood being cultivated by the regional bloc.

Six countries making up the East Africa economic region have already confirmed participation and they include Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and South Sudan.

Speaking to Xinhua, Richard Othieno from the EAC Secretariat Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Department said they intend to hold competitions that reflect the most popular sporting codes in the region.

“We will have competition in athletics, football, handball, basketball, netball, volleyball, tennis, rugby, judo, karate, boxing and taekwondo,” said Othieno.

Already, the Kenya Volleyball Federation has named provisional squads (men and women) ahead of the games in Bujumbura.

KVF Secretary General, Ben Juma, said the federation will enter players who will be available. Kenya’s senior women’s national team is currently in a training camp in Nairobi preparing for the World Championships.

Juma however ruled out the federation sending the team to Bujumbura to use the tournament to gauge their preparedness, saying the quality of competition at the regional level is still below international standards. “Kenya will also send beach volleyball players to the event,” said Juma.

“It is the first edition and we hope and look forward to good performances from both teams,” he added.

EAC Secretary General Liberat Mfumukeko says the games hopes to showcase the diverse sporting talents in the region. “We are aiming at making the event attractive to the public to enable East Africans to move across borders to interact freely within the region,” said Mfumukeko. 

             

 

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