Kenya crash out of Cecafa
Harambee Stars are out of this year’s Cecafa Tusker Senior Challenge Cup after losing 1-0 to Sudan in their final Group C match on Saturday.
Stars went into the game needing only a point to progress to the knockout stages of the regional competition but they came out unstuck against an enterprising Sudan side with Bashir Koko heading in the winner in the first half.
The result saw Sudan finish second in the group on five points; same as Malawi who have a better goal difference while Kenya finish third on three points after one win and two losses.
Any hopes of going through as one of the two best losers were dashed by Zimbabwe who beat Tanzania 2-1 with both teams qualifying.
Saturday’s result continues Kenya’s poor performance in the tournament with the Stars having lost six of their last seven matches in the competition. The last time they qualified to the last eight was in the 2009 edition.
Coach Francis Kimanzi made two changes on the side that had beaten Ethiopia 2-0 with Kevin Kimani and Jamal Mohammed making way for Collins Okoth and Stephen Waruru.
But they struggled to get going failing to register a shot on target against a youthful Sudanese side.
Koko scored the all important goal crashing in a header past Duncan Ochieng midway through the first half for the game’s only goal.
Despite dominating possession in the second half, Kenya was unable to create any clear cut chances with Victor Ochieng and Bob Mugalia starved off service from midfield.
“I must rotate players because they are all young and I need to check what they can do. We have to keep preparing our team and must accept that if you haven’t prepared well, then you are bound to struggle,” said Stars coach Francis Kimanzi after the game.