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Talanta Hela Tournament Coast Champions Awarded

The Mombasa County team that represented the region in the 2023 Talanta Hela National under 20 tournaments received a cash award of Sh500,000 for their exemplary performance during the championship after reaching the quarter-finals.

The team was awarded a cash gift after four of their players were picked to travel to Spain for an exposure tour to sharpen their skills for bigger assignments in the future.

The team reached the quarters where they were ousted by Homabay by a score of 5-3. The national tournament had teams from four regions: Rift Valley, Coast, Central, and Western.

Launched in 2023 by the Ministry of Sports, Culture, and Heritage, the Talanta Hela Football Tournament is a national youth sporting event. It aims to identify and nurture football talents. The tournament divided into regional and national stages is open to boys and girls.

James Theuri of Kenya Academy of Sports, when the tournaments were taking place they were scouting for talents using Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Scouts who will form teams based on players’ ages.

“Four boys selected from Mombasa in under 20 teams that will be visiting Spain for ten days for further training to develop the team,” said Theuri during the handing over of the cheque to the Mombasa team.

Amos Wanjala, William Gitamu, Abdulhafidh Abdallah, and Ali Zambia were the youths selected to join the national team that will travel to Spain.

“We are here today to award all the winners, Mombasa was the coastal region champions for boys, and we had promised that all the regional winners would be awarded Sh500,000,” stated Theuri.

Mombasa Team, which participated in the Talanta Hela tournament during the awarding by the Kenya Sports Academy in Mombasa. Photo by Abdulrahman Allui

He noted that 80 percent of the money would be distributed to the 25 players each receiving Sh16, 000 while the team’s five technical officials will get the remaining 20 percent each receiving Sh20,000.

The team coach, Kinero Swaleh Ali, was impressed with his team’s overall performance in the tournament.

“When I train these boys, I see a lot of talent in them, and I believe they will all play for top teams not just in Kenya, but all over the world. If you look at the players who were chosen to travel to Spain, Mombasa had the most players selected than any other county,” said Ali.

Abdulhafidh Abdallah, one of the players who will jet off to Spain, thanked the Ministry of Sports for giving them exposure.

“The competition allowed us to play in the best facilities, such as Nyayo and Kasarani Stadiums. It has also helped us financially since the money we have received today would greatly benefit my family,” stated Abdallah.

He further urged the Ministry of Sports to continue with the tournaments that will revolutionize football in the country by nurturing talents. The opportunity to travel to Spain will give the players a platform to showcase their football talents.

By Abdulrahman Allui

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