Winning is not our utmost target, says Junior Stars coach ahead of CECAFA final

Experience, huge experience is what the national U15’s team’s head coach Sagar Lakhani is cherishing the most after leading his team to the finals of the first ever CECAFA U15’s boys tournament currently ongoing in Asmara Eritrea.

Kenya are set to take on their counterparts from Uganda in the final set to be played on Friday from 3PM local time, a match that will take the regional rivalry between the two nations to new heights.

The Junior Stars will play in the final having not lost a single match of the five that they have played thus far.

Stars wins

The team, which is composed of players coming in from FKF’s Centre of Excellence, topped their group with 10 points courtesy of wins against Sudan (4-0), Somalia (3-1), Eritrea (2-1) and a 1-1 draw with Burundi.

After a 1-1 draw with Rwanda in the semi-finals, Kenya progressed to the final 4-2 on penalties and ahead of the final, Lakhani is looking at the invaluable experience that his charges have gained which according to him, will boost the national senior team in years to come.

He said, “We are preparing to play in the final which is a testament to the hardwork that we have put in as a team.

“But for me I am looking at the experience that the boys as well as us the coaches have gained. Someone said that we have received five years’ worth of experience in this tournament. I will not go that far but on the experience side we have gained quite a lot.

Developmental team

“Our team is a developmental one. Winning is good but the most important thing is to learn so that the boys can graduate to become players for the national team of the highest caliber,” he enthused.

Kenya will face off against a Ugandan team that has produced dominant displays in the tournament including an impressive 6-0 thumping of Burundi in the semis.

Stars will however be without midfielder Rajab Umar who was sent off in the shootout win over Rwanda.