Handball champions NCPB shift focus to regional title

The league is set to conclude in two weeks but the millers have accrued an unassailable lead and are champions in waiting.

ulinzi vs NCPB
(KDF in Action Against NCPB)

Timothy Kirimi-captained National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) men’s side have turned their focus to making their return to the East and Central Africa Handball Federation (ECAHF) championship count.

The 2021 edition of the ECAHF championship is set for 28 November to 4 December in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

On the weekend, the millers beat Ulinzi Handball Club in the Kenya Handball Federation (KHF) men’s league by a single goal in 28-29 score line and the victory, without a doubt sealed the title for NCPB on Saturday.

When they took to the court on Sunday in their final match against Boomarang, anyone who has followed the league recently knew the Kisii-based side stood no chance against a charged NCPB looking to end their season on a high. The Paul Pudo coached side won 19-30 to seal their title.

While they have to wait for the Super Cup to be played so as to lift their trophy, NCPB are plotting to make the Super Cup trophy their third of the year as they target the ECAHF title.

“We have missed the last two editions in Zanzibar and Kigali. Our last appearance was in 2017 at Dar es Salaam and we finished second to the Congolese champions in an event played in a round-robin format. Strathmore University finished third and Black Mamba were fourth. 

We did not break training as we have little time to prepare for action at that level. We will face more experienced teams than we did in the local league as teams taking part in the championship have international players in their teams. We are looking at clinching the tie so we have to be at our best,” said Kirimi.

On their way to retaining the local league, Pudo’s charges only lost one match, a shock defeat to General Service Unit (GSU) who were considered newbies having featured for the first time in the abandoned 2019/20 season.

“We have had a perfect run after that loss but all the same we have to make a few adjustments, especially on our defence. Our offense is good but we can do better defensively,” added Kirimi while thanking the team’s management for the opportunity to fight for a rare trebble with their trip away to Dar es Salaam.

The KHF leagues are expected to conclude in the next two weekends giving teams about a week to prepare for the regional tourney.

©Mozzart Sports Ke

Lynette Matheka, Journalist.

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