Hippos Are Tsingtao Kefofa Cup Champions

Hippos FC players celebrate their victory with Principal Secretary, State Department for Industry and Ministry of Trade, Juma Mukhwana (in shirt) and Chinese Embassy Counselor Zhang Yijun (in black suit and white shirt) at Ngong Race Course grounds in nairobi on Saturday March 11, 2013.PHOTO/JONAH ONYANGO

NAIROBI, Kenya- Hippos FC are the champions of the inaugural Tsingtao Kefofa Cup football tournament held at the Ngong Race Course in Nairobi at the weekend.

The champions edged out A 1000 Sportif FC 3-2 on post-match penalties to lift the competition whose mission was to strengthen the already existing 60 year old relationship between China and Kenya.

The two sides had battled to a barren draw in regulation, before they proceeded for the dreaded spot kicks.

Hippos FC who are the 2023 Tsingtao Kefofa Cup football tournament champions. PHOTO/JONAH ONYANGO

Kevin Odingo netted the decisive penalty after Hippos goalkeeper Ezekiel Kombo saved A 1000 Sportif’s spot kick.

Hippo’s midfielder Bramwel Karamoja emerged the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the tournament.

Goalkeeper Sichen Li was feted as the best Chinese player in the tournament.

Hippo’s custodian Kombo won the Golden Gloves award after he emerged the best goalkeeper of the tournament.

Tsingtao Beer Marketing Manager Sammy Zhan (in red) presents Hippo’s captain Bramwel Karamoja with the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the tournament award. PHOTO/JONAH ONYANGO

Apart from football, there was the thrilling beer drinking contest that was won by Paul Polosa of the Kenya Sports Journalist FC. Other categories awarded were the penalty shootouts and patriotic song contests.

Tsingtao Beer Marketing Manager Sammy Zhan hailed the tournament saying it managed to bring young Chinese and Kenyans together to network and create long lasting friendships.

“The tournament run smoothly, we hope to expand it to a bigger and better version in the coming editions,” Zhan said.

Zhan’s sentiments were echoed by Chinese Embassy Counselor Zhang Yijun who reiterated that both countries are out to work for the benefit of the Kenyan people.

A section of the Chinese teams that took part in the event. PHOTO/JONAH ONYANGO

“This tournament cemented our long lasting friendship, we will continue to engage together to take Kenya to greater heights,” Yijun stated.

Principal Secretary, State Department for Industry and Ministry of Trade, Juma Mukhwana who graced the ceremony stated:

“We are friends, we are brothers, this tournament has brought us together, and it signifies the long term engagements the two nations have had in their dealing.

“On behalf of our Ministry and Kenya at large, we welcome the china people to our country, we are ready to interact and do great business with them,” Mukhwana underlined.

Tournament Director and Smant Media Services proprietor Balozi Yang during the occasion. PHOTO/ JONAH ONYANGO

Kenya Football Fans Federation President Francis Liboyi hinted out that China and Kenya will soon have a high profile fellowship where Kenya and China players will visit both countries for sports and business exchange programs.

“This tournament was successful, plans are underway for the second edition where we thinking of incorporating other disciplines like basketball, netball, athletics and many other sports categories,” Liboyi underscored.

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