Kenya Chess team requires Kshs.2.5 m
The Kenyan team for the World Youth chess championships in Maribor, Slovenia is in need of KSh2.5 million to make the trip for the event slated for November 7-19.
With over 1500 participants from 100 countries, Kenya in expected to dispatch three Kenyan players Maxrolle Wambua, Raisa Wanjiku and Gilliane Otieno ‘Titi’ who qualified to represent the country but unfortunately there is no state or federation sponsorship for the trip, and their families cannot provide the substantial funds involved.
Wambua a New Light Junior Academy pupil, Wanjiku of Buru Buru 1 Primary School and Gillian of Nairobi Pentecostal Church Academy appealed for sponsors and well wishers to bail them out to don Kenya’s national colours.
“I see the Government providing for athletes and other sportsmen, I wish they would also provide for us to participate in the international event,” they said.
National team coach Samuel Kimani said if the juniors do not travel it will dampen their spirits after working hard to qualify and prepare for the world event and may get discouraged from pursuing chess as sport.
Kimani said the players missed out in the ongoing Africa Youth chess championship in Pretoria, South Africa due to lack of funds in the tournament which would have been used as a build up for the world extravaganza.
The coach said they have already given their proposal to the government through the Commissioner of Sports Gordon Oluoch and have yet to receive any feedback.
Africa Sports Management came to rescue by donating Sh500,000 but which still is shy of the budgeted amount to adequately cater for the trip.
The institution’s president Professor Kihumbu Thairu, said the organization was touched by a story in a local daily highlighting the plight of the stranded young chess players to make the contribution and urged other stakeholders and government to chip in.