04.01.2002 Hockey

Ghana to host Africa club hockey championship

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Ghana will host this year's 14th Africa club hockey championship in April, Kenya Hockey Union (KHU) chairman Hardev Singh said Tuesday.

Singh, who is also an official of the Africa Hockey Federation (AHF), revealed the new development in Nairobi while announcing Kenya's three representatives to this year's continental event.

These are national league club champions, Armed Forces of Kenya, and the women's crown holders, Telkom Kenya and runners-up Sliders, who will feature in the sixth Africa Nations Cup to run alongside the men's club event in Accra.

It will be tall order for Armed Forces who succumbed to defending champions Sharkeel of Egypt last year.

Like other African hockey-playing nations of South Africa, Egypt, Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa, Namibia and Zimbabwe, Kenya will use the tournament to shape up for next year's eighth All Africa Games in Abuja, Nigeria.

In another development, KHU will this month name the national team to February's women's four-nation invitational tournament in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.

The tournament will bring together Kenya, Namibia, South Africa and hosts Zimbabwe.

South Africa remains the strongest team in the tournament set for 1 to 10 February by virtue of being the reigning All Africa Games gold medallists.

The highflying South Africans re-affirmed their supremacy in the women's continental battlefield during the 1999 seventh Africa Games in Johannesburg, having taken gold during the sixth edition of the Pan African games in Harare, Zimbabwe four years earlier.

In Nairobi, Kenya's preparations for the tournament starts with local friendly matches before the team jets out to South Africa for build-up ties, enroute to Bulawayo.

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