Isiolo Barracks FC qualifies for regional Under 19 championships

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The Eastern region championships will take place between July 10 and July 14 with the qualifiers to later participate in the nationals that will be held in Kisii starting August 4 this year.

Isiolo Barracks Secondary School is among the teams that will represent the county at the Eastern region Under 19 championships in Kitui from Wednesday 10th July.

This is after Biliqo Secondary School, their opponents in an emotive final match played at Isiolo Boys High School grounds, abandoned the play in protest of a penalty kick awarded 17 minutes to the final whistle after one of their defenders committed a foul inside the penalty area.

There was literally nothing happening on the field for the 17 minutes as some of the aggrieved players could be seen trying to convince the centre referee to overturn the decision which was stayed after consultation with the assistant referees.

The match ended 1-1 with later consultations among the referees and other officials declaring Barracks FC the winner following the opponent’s misconduct which is against FIFA rules.

The final matches for various categories under the county championship that brought together secondary school teams from across the 10 wards were held at Isiolo Boys and Isiolo Girls school grounds on Sunday. Every Sub-County produced one team for each category.

Kenya Secondary School Sports Association Isiolo Secretary Belvin Mauti said while it was encouraging that the majority of the participating teams displayed outstanding talent despite grappling with inadequate training facilities, many of them were not well conversant with the laws of the game.

“Instances of emotions running high during the match are normal but it is evident many (of the players) are not aware of the FIFA rules that make referee decisions regarding facts about the play final,” Belvin said.

He said it was sad that the eliminated team chose to listen to advice from their supporters who asked them to sit down in protest of the penalty instead of adhering to the referee’s directive.

Barracks FC Vice Captain Joseph Nachei termed the match as their toughest in the county’s competition.

“We have picked a lot of lessons especially not underrating any team and we hope to maintain the zeal and qualify at the regional championship so that we get an opportunity to participate in the nationals,” Joseph who is the team’s goalie said.

Other finalists who will accompany Isiolo Barracks for the regional competitions are MCK Kisima 78 Secondary (Girls Soccer), St Mary’s Secondary (Netball), Isiolo Girls (Basketball), Ngaremara Girls (Volleyball) and Waso Secondary that won Boys Basketball and Volleyball finals.

The Isiolo teams will compete with those from Marsabit, Tharaka-Nithi, Meru, Embu, Machakos, Makueni and Kitui in the region championships.

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