Zoo Youngsters won play-offs marches home and away against AP Bomet to land a promotion in the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Division One League.
The play-offs were used to determine which team between the two was to be promoted to Division One after AP Bomet were crowned the champions of Division Two Central Zone A with 65 points while Zoo Youngsters topped the league Central Zone B after collecting 61 points.
In the first match played at the Kericho Green Stadium, the home side- Zoo hammered visiting AP Bomet 2-1. The hosts got their goals through Zico Kombo and Brian Ochieng while the visitors got their lone goal through Ali Khamisi.
The kings proved they were no pushovers when they won again the return leg at Silibwet playing ground in Bomet County where they beat their rivals by a solitary goal netted by Peter Anyona to bring the tally to 3-1 and enabled Zoo to comfortably land the promotion to the next league.
Zoo Youngsters sponsor cum coach, Dominic Ochieng was elated after the team was promoted to Division One. He attributed the success to dedicated and disciplined players who were out to take their careers to the next level.
“This did not come as a surprise because we have players and everyone who is committed in every department to ensure we had a success story. So I want to say, we’re now reaping fruits of hard work. To beat 32 football teams is not an easy task. My lads took training seriously, followed instructions and to crown it all, they were disciplined,” said Ochieng on Wednesday in Kericho town.
He said they would hit the ground running immediately in terms of training so that they compete and collect maximum points when the Division One League kicks-off in the next couple of weeks.
Ochieng said to run a football team needed a lot of support in terms of finances saying they were facing challenges and were operating on a shoe string budget and called on the county government of Kericho, companies and well-wishers to support the team in bid for it to realise its dream.
“Football teams around here like ours need a lot of support for them to excel in the sport. So there’s need for the county, companies and other stakeholders to pool resources aimed at supporting such teams,” said Ochieng.
He said they lacked money for transport, boots, uniforms and upkeep for the players so that the players and clubs or teams grow to take the football sector to the next level.
Ochieng at the same time took issue with the county administration for allegedly not being committed to support youths who have talent in sports.
He observed that the future for the youths appear bleak if the county does not address the issue with seriousness.
By Dominic Cheres