Kitui County, Dedan Kimathi and Chuka University are among the teams from outside the county that have confirmed their attendance for the Embu Open Sports Tournament which will be held this weekend. These will play alongside the various secondary schools, colleges and clubs that will be attending the two day event.
The 4th/5th February event will be held at Kangaru School, Embu University and Kigari College as part of the teams’ build up for the upcoming season in different competitions.
The eighth edition of the annual tournament will feature nine sports disciplines- football, rugby, volleyball, hockey, netball, basketball, handball, badminton and table tennis for both men and ladies. Partcipating teams will be divided into two categories: high school and clubs/colleges. At no stage will the separate categories meet, meaning at the end of the tournament there will be two winners for each discipline. Elijah Kiarie, one of the tournament organisers, says this is a logistical decision owing to the different abilities of the participants.
“Being a school term, we would not like to violate the schools’ policies about students’discipline and interaction wiith non-students. Also, we want to have the students playing in their own category owing to their young age and little experience. Playing them against the seniors, some of whom have experience from competitive leagues, limits their window of competition,” says Kiarie.
Organisers and rewards
The competition is organised by the Embu Open Youth Initiative Forum, a group that is registered with the Social Services department. The awards for the tournament will be trophies and certificates.
Says Kiarie, “We have not managed to find a sponsor in line with our tournament objective, which is to offer the teams a chance for pre-season build up. We were hoping the County Government would come in to support us, but we have not been able to secure that. As such, we cannot be able to offer cash or prized awards at this stage.”
Teams willing to take part in the event will be expected to pay a registration fee of Ksh. 2,000 to the organising committee, through either Kiarie (0721513419), Mr. Machria (07 23856970) or Mr. Kihonge (0720249100). Registration is open until the morning of the tournament.
Teams will be divided into pools in respective categories. The number of pools will depend on the number of entrants t the point of first kick off. This will also determine how the competition will proceed from the pool stages; it could go straight to semi finals, or start at quarter finals if there are many teams.