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NSL side appoints new coach

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Shem Wema will be the Team Manager.

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Watford stalemate hits Spurs Euro hopes

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Watford’s Troy Deeney (L) vies with Spurs defender Jan Vertonghen © AFP / Adrian DENNIS

LONDON, United Kingdom, Jan 18 – Watford held Tottenham to a goalless draw on Saturday to extend their unbeaten run in the Premier League and further damage Spurs’ Champions League ambitions.

When Nigel Pearson took over at Vicarage Road last month Watford looked doomed ro relegation but he has put together a remarkable run of results to lift the club out of the relegation zone.

It is a different story for Jose Mourinho’s Spurs who, without the injured Harry Kane and with uncertainty over the future of Christian Eriksen, could be 11 points off fourth spot by the end of the day.

But Pearson will feel Watford should have wrapped up all three points after his side squandered some golden chances in the second half and captain Troy Deeney saw his penalty saved.

Before kick-off there was a warm tribute from the fans to former manager Graham Taylor, who died three years ago.

It was the visitors who settled first, finding their rhythm from the kick-off, dominating possession and probing for openings on the edge of the Watford box .

But the home side broke dangerously in the second minute, with Gerard Deulofeu shooting wide of Paulo Gazzaniga’s goal.

That was a rare foray forward in the opening stages for Watford, who struggled to get on top of Mourinho’s men.

Son Heung-min looked lively on the left of Tottenham’s attack and had the first shot on target but despite all their posession Watford goalkeeper Ben Foster rarely looked troubled.

– Watford threat –

The home side gradually worked their way into the game and started to see much more of the ball.

They had a good chance to test Gazzaniga when Japhet Tanganga was booked after bringing down Ismaila Sarr in a dangerous position just outside the penalty box but Nathaniel Chalobah wasted the opportunity.

Shortly before the half-hour there was a delay of several minutes as referee Michael Oliver was forced to change his communication kit, accompanied by the crowd chanting: “It’s not football any more.”

Foster saved from Son in the 30th minute and was down smartly to keep out a sharp Lucas Moura shot after a delightful through ball from Dele Alli.

Watford flew out of the blocks in the second half and could have been 2-0 up but for some poor finishing.

First Abdoulaye Doucoure scuffed the ball just wide after good work down the right by the dangerous Sarr before Sarr himself failed to connect properly from close range.

Although Watford were now well on top, Spurs continued to look dangerous on the break.

Alli headed over while Son shot after being released through the middle.

The decisive moment appeared to come with about 20 minutes to go when Spurs captain Jan Vertonghen was booked for handling Deulofeu’s shot in the penalty area.

Deeney stepped up and struck his shot firmly but Gazzaniga dived to his right to keep the ball out and the scores level.

Mourinho brought Eriksen off the bench and later introduced new signing Gedson Fernandes but it was Watford who continued to look the more dangerous side.

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Kenya v South Sudan tie delayed as fans break gate

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PHILIP ONYANGO

By PHILIP ONYANGO
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The kick-off of the much-anticipated Kenya versus South Sudan showdown in the last match of the Fiba Afro-basketball pre-qualifiers at Nyayo National Stadium Gymnasium has been delayed.

This was after a mammoth crowd turned up for the match, which the winner will sail through to the next stage, and forced their way into the venue.

Fans on the court before the Fiba
Fans on the court before the Fiba Afro-basketball pre-qualifiers match between Kenya and South Sudan at Nyayo National Stadium Gymnasium on January 18, 2020. PHOTO | PHILIP ONYANGO |

By the time of going to press, Fiba and the Kenya Basketball Federation officials were holed up in a meeting to decide on the way forward with the mostly likely scenario being to call off the match.

KBF chairman Paul Otula had earlier ordered that the gates be locked after it was apparent that there was no more space to accommodate the droves of people who had made their way into the facility.

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Fans on the court before the Fiba
Fans on the court before the Fiba Afro-basketball pre-qualifiers match between Kenya and South Sudan at Nyayo National Stadium Gymnasium on January 18, 2020. PHOTO | PHILIP ONYANGO |

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But the fans, dodged the security personnel and broke the rear gate allowing all and sundry to flock in filling every s[pace including the playing court against the Fiba rules. The rules require that fans do not access the perimeter wall of the playing court.

Both the Kenya Morans and the South Sudan teams had left the venue for their respective hotels.

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Ulinzi Youth, JYSA face-off in Chapa Dimba final

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Either Laikipia’s Ulinzi Youth or JYSA from Thika will on Sunday be crowned the new Central region Chapa Dimba na Safaricom boys’ champions.

JYSA, coached by Mark Lukang, had to rally from behind to beat Irigiro from Maragua 2-1 at the fully-packed Nanyuki Stadium in Laikipia to qualify for the final.

Pio Auma fired Irigiro ahead in the 11th minute of the clash, but JYSA responded through Dickson Elegae nine minutes later. Thereafter, the clash was balanced, but with few of scoring chances.

And just when the hundreds of supporters who had turned up for the match thought the contest would be decided on penalties, Roy Kimoi struck from close range to put his side in the finals.

Lokang said he was happy to advance to final and is looking forward to winning the title for the first time.

“Where we have reached is because of the hard work. It will be tough but we will find a way and hopefully win the title,” said Lokang.

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In the second boys’ semi-final, hosts Ulinzi Youth beat Kiamutugu from Kirinyaga by a solitary goal to the set stage for the showdowns against JYSA in the final.

Brian Kasure made amends for his early miss, with a 17th minute strike, which Paul Wachuga, who had been impressive at Kiamutugu’s goal failed to deal with.

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Ulinzi Youth coach Vincent Otieno expressed confidence of lifting the title.

“I have confidence in my boys. I believe tomorrow we will leave this place happy having won the title,” said Otieno.

Last year’s winners Euronuts exited the tournament in the group stages.

Ulinzi Youth 1- 0 Kiamutugu

Girls: Falling Waters 12 – 0 Karima Queens

Limuru Starlets 5-1 Achievers Queens

Girls: Falling Waters v Limuru Starlets – 8.30am

Boys: JYSA v Ulinzi Youth – 10:30am

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