Former Kenya Handball Federation (KHF) men’s league champions Technical University of Kenya (TUK) are targeting a top-six finish in regular season as they set their sight on fighting for the Super Cup title.
The 2013 champions have had a downward trend since winning the title, finishing 11th last year with 17 points from eight wins and one draw in the 18 matches played. They have, however, had a promising season so far recording five wins from eight matches played.
They picked two triumphs this weekend, a 34-26 win over Dedan Kimathi University on Saturday before subjecting Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) to a 23-21 defeat. The two wins propelling TUK to ten points, six shy of leaders Ulinzi.
“The toughest match was against JKUAT but we had set our target on winning. After a draw in the first half we composed ourselves and capitalised on their mistakes to clinch the win. Our technical bench was also critical in our win as they made tactical changes as the match went on,” said coach-cum player John Wachira.
He added, “We are keen to finish in the top six after 21 matches then battle it out for the Super Cup title with the other tough teams in the league. We have lost three matches against Kenyatta University, Rangers and Flickers so far but we have since learned from the mistakes we made in those encounters. We hope to keep the good run going and feature in the playoffs.”
Wachira blames their downward trend in the league after their maiden title on the vicious cycle of having players, who are students, come and go before they can get a grip on the premier league and thus having to nurture new players year in year out.
On his part JKUAT captain Stower Radzi blames their loss on many fouls committed in the second half that resulted in two-minute punishments. He also pointed out the absence of their coach on the technical bench affected the flow of play.
“We did not play well especially in the second half against TUK. However, I am glad we have achieved our goal of having a better goal difference after winning the other two matches. We will use the loss as a springboard to better performance in upcoming matches,” said Radzi.