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Tusker’s Cecafa participation in doubt

Football Kenya Federation (FKF) could bar Tusker from competing in the Council for East and Central Africa Football Associations (Cecafa) Kagame Cup in Tanzania days after it nominated the club to represent Kenya at the regional sporting event.

In an interview with Nairobi News, FKF’s Chief Executive Barry Otieno suggested the Kenyan football body’s priority is to conclude the 2020/2021 FKF Premier League season.

“We had asked Cecafa to postpone the tournament to a later date to allow us to finish the league. They haven’t replied to our letter and it would be very difficult to participate in the competition. We have to finish the league first and that is our official position,” said Otieno.

The Kenyan top-flight league is scheduled to end on August 21, 2021, while the Cecafa Kagame Cup is slated for August 1-15 in Tanzania’s Coastal city.

Cecafa Secretary General Auka Gecheo, in a separate interview, confirmed the tournament would go on as scheduled but will be played behind closed doors to curb the spread of the deadly coronavirus pandemic.

Tusker’s participation in this competition is shrouded in controversy after FKF nominated them instead of Gor Mahia, the reigning league champions, as has been the norm.

As per the virtual draw for this annual competition, which is partially bankrolled by Rwanda President Paul Kagame, held on Tuesday, July 27, 2021, Tusker will face Tanzania’s Azam and Albatara (South Sudan) in Group ‘B’

Guest team Nyasa Big Bullets from Malawi were placed in Group ‘C’ with Tanzanian record champions Yanga and Express from Uganda.

Defending champions KCCA from Uganda, Le Messenger (Burundi), and KMKM (Zanzibar) headline Group A.