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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Sharks to represent Kenya at CAF Confed
Cup after domestic trophy win

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kariobangi Sharks FC will represent Kenya at the 2019 Confederation of Africa Football (CAF) Confederations Cup after beating Sofapaka FC 3-2 in the final of the domestic Cup on Saturday in Nairobi.

George Abege struck a brace for the winners who also pocketed 20,000 U.S. dollars in prize money as they made history by winning their first ever trophy since they came into existence in 2000.

Sharks, who finished third in 2016 and were losing finalists last year took the lead in the 27th minute when Abege opened the scoring when he latched onto a through ball from Harrison Mwendwa and scored with a low left footed strike past Wycliffe Kasaya in the Sofapaka goal.

However, their opponents who were seeking a fourth cup win following their successes in 2007, 2010 and 2014 hit back and made it 1-1 three minutes to the break.

Sofapaka came out stronger in the second half as Kevin Kimani netted their second goal with a diving header before the hour mark.

That was the cue for Sharks to stage a roaring comeback as their head coach, William Muluya, made an inspired substitution, bringing on Sydney Lokale for Henry Juma.

The change proved to be a masterstroke when the new man made it 2-2 in the 80th with a terrific header to set up a tense finish to the contest.

Five minutes later, Sharks completed the turn around when Abege made capital of a defensive mistake and lashed on to the ball, side-footing it past Wycliffe Kasaya in the Sofapaka goal for 3-2.

There was still time for Kimani to sky a penalty that could have made the dramatic game 3-3 and try as they might, Sofapaka could not find the equalizer as Sharks celebrated an epic victory in a virtually empty stadium.

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EARLIER REPORTS:

Okutoyi to spearhead Kenya at Africa Tennis Nations Cup finals in Botswana

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya’s top female tennis player Angela Okutoyi has cancelled her intended tour of Australia and will be available for selection for the Africa Nations Cup in Gaborone, Botswana in November.

Okutoyi, who withstood pressure from her peers to win the Kenya Open, will team up with Ibrahim Yego, Ryan Randiek and Ismael Changawa while Kevin Cheruiyot and Sheil Kotecha have confirmed they will not be available for the tournament.

Francis Mutuku, the Tennis Kenya vice chairman said here Friday that the team will use the tournament as part of its preparations ahead of the Davis Euro Africa Group Two tournament in February.

Mutuku also said the Kenyan youngster has been invited to compete in the prestigious Orange Bowl Championship in Florida, USA in December.

“It is important to have our best player in the team heading to Bostwana,” said Mutuku. “We hope the experience learnt will benefit the players in their preparation for the David Cup next year.”

Okutoyi finished second at the Africa Junior Masters tournament in Tunisia, winning three of her four matches in the round robin tourney.

The Africa Nations Tennis Cup will attract players from Botswana, Zimbabwe, Kenya, South Africa, Lesotho, Namibia, Mozambique, Burundi, Rwanda, Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Swaziland, Mauritius, Madagascar, Malawi and Angola.

She also won the International Tennis Federation (ITF) Africa Junior Championships in Algiers in August and was part of the continent’s team that toured France, Germany, Belgium and the Czech Republic in July. However, the main focus is to excel in the Davis Cup in February.

Organizers of the Davis Cup will pit 12 seeds against the other 12 as 24 teams for the 2019 qualifiers, taking place in Feb. 1-2.

The 12 winners in February will join Croatia, France, Spain and USA plus two wild card nominees, who secured their places in the 2019 Davis Cup finals.

The wild card nominees are Argentina and Britain. Winner of the Euro Africa tourney in February will meet Canada in the finals. 

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Uganda names squad for ICC World Cricket League Division III

KAMPALA Uganda (Xinhua) -- Uganda cricket coach Steve Tikolo and the selectors panel on Thursday named the squad that will appear in the International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cricket League Division III tournament in Muscat, Oman. The Championship will attract six nations and will kick off on November 4.

Uganda qualified for the event after winning the 2018 ICC World Cricket League Division Four tournament played in May this year in Malaysia. Roger Mukasa, who has been in excellent form in 2018, is the team captain, while Brian Masaba is the vice-captain. “We are capable of doing well in Oman. All we need is everyone in the team to execute their roles,” Mukasa told Xinhua on Thursday.

The only two new faces in the team are Dinesh Kumar Nakrani and Ronak Patel who will make their debuts in an ICC tournament. The two played for Uganda in the ICC World Twenty20 Africa ‘B’ Qualifier in Kigali, Rwanda this year.

Uganda’s squad: Roger Mukasa (captain), Arnold Otwani, Hamu Kayondo, Ronak Patel, Dinesh Nakrani, Riazat Ali Shah, Deus Muhumuza, Irfan Mohammed, Charles Waiswa, Frank Nsubuga, Bilal Hassun, Henry Ssenyondo, Brian Masaba (vice-captain) and Kenneth Waiswa. Reserves: Emmanuel Isaneez and Fred Achelam.

 

Burundi’s ruling party says fifth round of inter-Burundi
dialogue to be last held outside Burundi

BUJUMBURA Burundi (Xinhua) -- The fifth round of the inter-Burundi dialogue scheduled for Oct. 24-29 in Tanzania’s Arusha will be the last held out of the country, Burundi’s ruling party said on Saturday.

The main goal of the fifth round of the dialogue is to analyze the implementation of the consensual roadmap to Burundi’s 2020 elections signed in August this year by most of political parties in the country, where they agreed to peacefully participate in the elections.

The roadmap also encourages people in exile to return to Burundi voluntarily.

All the other issues focused by the dialogue have found their responses in the new national constitution promulgated on June 7, 2018, and the 2018-2027 National Development Plan launched in August 2018, said Evariste Ndayishimiye, secretary general of the National Council for the Defense of Democracy-Forces for the Defense of Democracy (CNDD-FDD), in a statement issued in the capital, Bujumbura.

Launched in December 2015, the inter-Burundi dialogue aimed at finding a solution to the political crisis in Burundi, is led by East African Community (EAC) under the mediatorship of Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni. The EAC also appointed former Tanzanian President Benjamin Mkapa as facilitator of the dialogue to support Museveni.

The dialogue has made no concrete progress.

The Burundian government had said it wants the dialogue to take place inside Burundi and will not sit at the same table with what it called “non-peaceful” stakeholders.

Burundi plunged into a crisis in April 2015 when President Pierre Nkurunziza decided to run his controversial third term bid, which he won in July 2015. His candidature, which was opposed by the opposition and civil society groups, resulted in a wave of protests, violence and even a failed coup in May 2015.

             

 

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