It's league format for Super Eight tournament

By alex wafula
Jan 12, 2022
  • Hussein Mohamed, Extreme Sports CEO received a cheque of Sh35 million from Sportpesa's Ronald Karauri witnessed by KPL Clubs Ambrose Rachier and Deputy Governor Jonathan Mueke. (Photo by Shutterspeed)

The annual Super Eight tournament which will run for 10 months will be played in a league format this year.

This was announced on Wednesday during the launch of this year's edition at a Nairobi hotel with Sportpesa, a local sports betting firm expected to spend Sh35 million on the tournament.

The Super Eight tournament was started 10 years ago as a two-month tournament and is run by Hussein Mohammed, the Chief Executive Officer of Extreme Sports Management. Last year, the tournament landed a fourteen-million shillings corporate sponsorship by Sportpesa.

The sponsors put in an additional Sh21 million to enable the organizers experiment with a league format this year. The league will be divided into three tiers, the Sportpesa Super Eight Premier League, the Sportpesa Super Eight Division one and the Sportpesa Super Eight tournament.

Sixteen teams will form the Sportpesa Super Eight Premier League. Eight teams from the west side of Nairobi and a further eight from the East side will be included in the league. The east side teams will comprise of Embakasi, Kamukunji, Kasarani and Madaraka while the west teams include Langata, Westlands, Starehe and Dagoretti.

Each of the eight regions will produce two teams which finished top in last year’s regional finals to form the league. The bottom three teams at the end of the season will be relegated to the Division one.

From the West will be TUK FC, Kiamaiko City, Kawangware, Melta KabiriaDiguna, Ajax, Kabete United and Shamako Babes. Kiambio Youth, Shauri Moyo Blue Stars, Masa, Jericho All Stars, Baba Dogo United, Metro, Kayole Asubuhi and Kayole Youth will form the team from the east side.

The Division one league will also be made up of 16 teams, those that finished position three and four in each of the eight regions last year. These will be Zamalek, Githurai Sportiff, Naibees, Bahati United, Macmillan, Tena Youth, Angola and Shauri Moyo from the east.

Leeds United, Rysa United, Park Road FC, Umeme Sports FC, Yes We Can, Riruta Muslim, Riara University and Rongai All Stars will form the west side teams.

Four teams to gain promotion

The third tier of the tournament will be open to all and four teams will, at the end of the season be promoted to the Division One. The tournament will run in the final three months of the league.

Hussein Mohammed, the Extreme Sports CEO explained he was not forming a parallel leagueto the one run by the Football Kenya Federation. Last year, when the tournament got sponsorship, Extreme Sports were taken to court by FKF Nairobi Branch over the same, but later on Super Eight was allowed to go on.

“We are not here to fight anybody and I said this before, I am not doing this because I want to run for office. I am not interested. We only want to give our youth a sporting chance,” Mohammed stated at the launch.

Sportpesa who only last year started sponsoring the Kenyan Premier League have affirmed they were impressed with their inaugural involvement last year.

Mohammed offered they decided to increase the scope of the tournament this year due to the increased sponsorship as well as a need to give more teams a chance to benefit from the tournament.

Each team which will participate in the Premier League will be entitled to a Sh10,000 monthly stipend while the amount will be Sh5,0000 for the second tier. Winners of the Premier league go home with Sh1 million while the winner of the second tier walk home with Sh500,000.

The nine-month league is expected to start on February 9.

Speaking at the event, Nairobi Deputy Governor Jonathan Mueke said the county will waive all stadium fees for the tournament as well as promising to rehabilitate all the community grounds from where the tournament will be played.

“We want to give the youth a chance because if we do so, you will not be worried of someone coming to steal from your home. Sports is one way that our county government is aiming to engage the youth."