National handball team shifts training base


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The national men’s handball team have moved their non-residential training sessions to Nyayo National stadium from Kaloleni grounds ahead of the January 15 to 25 Africa Olympics qualifiers in Tunisia.

The team, which has been training at Kaloleni grounds for over a month now, start training at Nyayo on Monday hoping to move to residential training at the Moi International Sports Centre indoor arena, Kasarani soon.

At the same time, team coach Peter Mwathi has welcomed the presence of national women’s coach Jack Ochieng, who has been drafted in the technical bench ahead of the 10-day bonanza.

Mwathi said the move wouldn’t have come at a right time, saying there are skills they couldn’t conduct at Kaloleni due to its surface.

“Nyayo is better placed than Kaloleni, but moving to the indoor facility at the Kasarani Stadium will be an added advantage. The qualifiers will be played indoors and it’s only fair we train in the same environment.

However, the Kenya Handball Federation through the Sports Ministry have assured us of the move to the Kasarani in due course,” said Mwathi, who doubles up as the Strathmore men’s team coach.


“Ochieng brings on board vast and rich experience as far as players’ analysis is concerned and I’m glad he is part of the team. Our hope is to work together to see to it that if the team doesn’t scoop the sole slot up for grabs to the Olympics, then it should finish among the top six nations as that will see them qualify for the 2021 World Championship to be held in Egypt.”

International Tyrus Omondi, who plies his trade with Rwanda Police, said the current squad has what it takes to pull a surprise at the event.

Omondi, who has won back-to-back Most Valuable Player accolades since joining the law enforcers side from National Cereals and Produce Board in 2017, however acknowledged it will not be a walk in the park.

“I have featured for the national team assignments before and I must say this is the best squad that has been assembled. The players are young and very competitive, which makes the whole training interesting as each player wants to make the cut,” said the goalkeeper.

A total of 22 players are training and only 16 are expected to form part of the travelling party. Kenya is in Pool ‘A’ alongside Egypt, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Guinea.

Kenya begins its campaign against DRC on January 16, before facing Egypt a day later. They complete their pool matches with a tie against Guinea on January 18.

Pool ‘B’ has Angola, Nigeria, Libya and Gabon. Hosts Tunisia, Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire and Cape Verde are in Pool ‘C’, while Pool ‘D’ has Morocco, Algeria, Congo and Zambia.

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