Preparations for the historic February 27 match between a select Kenya football team and English Premier League team Hull City crescendo over the weekend (Saturday 28th January) with the unveiling of the final 18-man squad.
The team – named SportPesa AllStars – comprises top players drawn from the SportPesa Premier League clubs. The 18 finalists were part of a larger AllStars team of 47 players which has over the last two weeks been whittled down gradually following training and assessments by four visiting Hull City coaches.
The four – Richard O’Donnelle, Daniel O’Keeffe, Terry Boyle and Dean Windass – took turns to train and evaluate the local players adding that they were looking for skills that would help the team gel with the European football playing standards.
“We were impressed and pleasantly surprised by the level of skills displayed by the local footballers that we have interacted with,” said Terry Boyle who graced the first week of the AllStars training camp which opened on January 16.
Football Kenya Federation CEO Robert Muthomi and his SportPesa counterpart Ronald Karauri visited the remaining 29 players at the camp today (Friday 27th January) ahead of the grand unveiling ceremony this afternoon at Kasarani Stadium, Nairobi.
“We are excited about this team and hope that it will be the start of better things to come for the players and also for the country in terms of football development,” said SportPesa CEO Ronald Karauri yesterday after visiting the training camp.
Hull City’s Commercial Manager Simon King and the club’s Sales Executive Tom Chadwick jetted in the country on Thursday evening to attend the AllStars grand unveiling.
SportPesa All Star Squad: Patrick Matasi, David Okello, Harun Shakava, Robison Kamura, Wesley Onguso, Orsbone Monday, Cliff Kasuti, David Kingatua, Oruchum Christopher, James Situma, Harun Nyakha, Humphrey Mieno, Moses ‘Dube’ Odhiambo, Joshua Otieno, Allan Wanga, Mark Makwatta, Geoffrey Kataka and Amos Nondi.