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Starlets clinch ticket to Women’s Cup of Nations

Kenya’s national women football team has realized its dream of playing in the 2018 African Women Cup of Nations (AWCON) after the Confederation of African Football (Caf) disqualified Equatorial Guinea.

Caf’s decision, which was delivered on Thursday, will see Starlets make a second appearance in the continental competition scheduled for Ghana from November 17 to December 1, following their maiden bow two years ago in Cameroon.

Harambee Starlets lost to the two-time holders 3-2 on aggregate in the last qualification round in June but appealed against Nzalang Nacional’s fielding six ineligible players.

KENYA’S PROTEST

“Kenya was protesting the eligibility of six players, however, they only maintained their protest regarding one player: Anette Jacky Messomo. The player in question was allegedly of Cameroonian nationality and had played for several European based clubs,” read part of the letter signed by Caf Disciplinary Board chairman Raymond Hack.

“The Disciplinary Board decides that Kenya’s protest is upheld, a sanction of 10, 000 USD (Sh1 million) is imposed on the Equatorial Guinea Football Association and the team is disqualified from the TOTAL African Women’s Cup of Nations 2018,” the letter concluded.

The draw for the final tourney will take place on Sunday in Accra with Kenya joining hosts Ghana, Algeria, Cameroon, Mali, Nigeria, South Africa and Zambia in the eight-team championships.