Premier League awards left a lot to be desired
The annual Kenyan Premier League Awards gala is primarily supposed to reward outstanding performers in the competition at the end of each season, while also toasting to the gains realized by various stakeholders who manage the league.
Considering the aforementioned pointers, suggestions by a sizeable number of players, coaches, administrators and fans describing Wednesday’s function at Safari Park Hotel as a “farce” are worth considering. Here is why.
Personal performance, especially consistency plus reliability (as per the stats), alongside ranking of one’s team on the final standings certainly impacts heavily on who is nominated for the best player’s award.
So the curious omission of Ugandan forward Dan Sserunkuma who not only outscored all his colleagues this season but also helped his team win the league title from the overall player of the year awards justifiably sent tongues wagging.
Instead, Anthony Ndolo (Sofapaka), Geoffrey “Baba” Kizito (Gor Mahia) and Stephen Waruru (Ulinzi Stars), whose influence cannot be compared to Sserunkuma’s, were took the top honours in that order.
Still, if Waruru can be considered as the third best player in the league, why doesn’t Sofapaka’s Enock Agwanda, who scored a equal number of goals and whose team finished in a better position than Waruru’s Ulinzi make the cut?
The same can be argued about the coach of the year winner Mike Mururi alongside the Golden Glove winner Jairus Adira both of Chemelil Sugar.
While there is no doubt that the duo were instrumental in the sugar millers’ fifth place finish this term, one is left wondering what coaches and custodians whose teams finished above Chemelil should do to be considered for the top gong.
How can one statistically prove that Mururi performed better than say Sam Timbe whose team came second in the league?
It is understood that the shortlist and overall winners is drawn by the league’s top coaches.
But with growing dissent and even suggestions of favouritism and bribery associated with the awards, KPL would do well to arrest this situation by including other stakeholders such as journalists and fans in the nominations forum.