The Annual Kothbiro football tournament will enter semifinal stage on Thursday, after mouthwatering quarter final matches staged on Tuesday afternoon, at the Ziwani grounds.
Muthurwa based Dallas All stars have qualified to the semifinals of the competition after edging out the well drilled Kajiado All Stars 2-1 in the first quarter final game.
Debutants Kajiado All Stars under the tutelage of experienced coach Ezekiel Akwana, were the surprise package of this edition having made it to the knockout stage at the first time of asking.
They finished top of Group D with 10 points ahead of defending champions Kingstone FC from Shauri Moyo and Eastleigh Youth.
In the second clash of the day, Asec Huruma won 2-1 against Kiambio ward representatives
Biafra Kamaliza who enjoyed the better part of the game especially in the last 20 minutes, where one of their goal was disallowed and, twice – the woodwork saved their opponents.
On Wednesday, Leeds United who knocked out last year’s winners Kingstone FC will be hoping to continue with its high flying form when they tussle against Ruaraka All Stars, who began their campaign for this year’s tournament with a narrow 1-0 win over Slum Soccer.
Later during the day,2018 finalists Githurai United will lock horns against Terror Squad in what is expected to be one of the most competitive games of this season.
Tournament coordinator Paul ‘Polosa’ Ojenge lauded new sponsors Betmoto gaming firm and their Tanzanian Dondo Cup partners for bringing confidence in the tournament that was marked with stoppages.
He thanked the 8 teams remaining in the tournament for showing patience and maturity.
“Despite a few hurdles here and there it’s been a great competition so far. We looking forward to even more interesting games ahead. Kothbiro has got a tradition and we will always strive to maintain its reputation. Initially things looked thick but thanks to Betmoto, we have been able to revive this noble initiative. A few issues have been sorted and, we hope to continue working with them in the future through a professionalized approach to ensure the ultimate goal of this tournament lives on, to benefit future generations” Polosa stated.
Betmoto Marketing manager and former Kenya rugby international Charles Cardovillis, known for his passion of developing the long term commercial plan and sustainable development goals of sports in the country, noted that all the thorny issues with the aggrieved teams had been ironed out ahead of the Sunday finals.
“We have met all the teams that’s why we put the tournament on a hold up until this. We sort of forged the way forward, on our side everyone wants to play football including the teams of last year. The biggest problem was just a breakdown in communication from the organizers, who the aggrieved teams felt they were making unrealistic promises. As Betmoto we have agreed to offset some of the prize money from last year then the organizers will work out a plan with the balance. This is all so that the good spirit of the tournament can carry on”
Literally translated, Koth biro means the rain is coming. It is one of the oldest tournaments which is played in November, December and January.
Because it is played off season, Koth Biro has a special place in the Nairobi Region’s sporting calendar. It is a Mtaa tournament which is aimed at keeping the football players busy over the festive season.
It is a social event but over the years, it has evolved into a serious tournament, attracting various teams from different regions in Nairobi.