KCB RFC coach hoping to finally win Soya award
KCB RFC tactician Curtis Olago will be hoping to break the duck in the upcoming Safaricom Sports Personality of The Year Awards (Soya) Coach of the Year category after making the shortlist for the umpteenth time.
The awards will be returning to Mombasa County for the second year running on January 24 where Kenya’s top athletes and officials will be feted for their exemplary performance in the eventful 2019 season.
Olago, a serial nominee in the annual prestigious awards, will square it out with Malkia Strikers’ tactician Paul Bitok, Harambe Starlets coach David Ouma, Carey Odhiambo of the Morans Basketball team and Vihiga Queens’ Alex Alumira.
To make the top five shortlist, Olago guided KCB to defending the Kenya Cup for a third year in a row after beating Kabras 23-15 in the final.
He also led the bankers to retaining the prestigious Impala Floodlit tournament for the third successive year after beating Menengai Oliers 23-14 in the final.
Olago’s fairy tale season did just not stop there, he went ahead and won the National Sevens Series circuit.
Bitok, on the other hand, highlighted his achievements of the year by successfully defending the coveted All Africa Games title after seeing off Cameroon 3-1.
En-route to the final, Bitok, who was handed the job on interim basis, ensured Malkia Strikers, a blend of troupers and greenhorns, did not lose a single match.After the African Games, Bitok also led Malkia Strikers to the World Cup in Japan.
Given the level of competition at World Cup, Bitok also savoured the fact that his team didn’t end up as the tail-end-Charlie.
He once again led his team to beat Cameroon at the World Cup which meant that Malkia Strikers left the tournament having at least won one match.
Ouma, meanwhile, guided the national women’s soccer team to winning the regional CECAFA Women’s Senior Challenge Cup for the first time after silencing hosts and rivals Tanzania 2-0.
He also reached the penultimate round of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics qualifiers, losing 1-0 on aggregate to the She Polopolo of Zambia.
For Odhiambo, he rose from obscurity to guide the national men’s basketball team (Morans) to an unprecedented silver medal in the AfroCan championship in Bamako, Mali.
In the final list is little known Alex Alumira who was at the steering wheel when Vihiga Queens completed a hat-trick of titles, winning the Football Kenya Federation (FKF) Women’s Premier League for the third time in a row.