There’s a lot of football talent and dishonesty in Ugandan football.
Both were evident as Airtel Rising stars concluded the West Nile and Buganda under-17 regional tournaments on Sunday in Arua and Luweero districts.
In Arua, Ezra Bida (Onduparaka FC) and Mahadi Bernard (All-stars) tried to lead their respective teams with commanding displays enroute to the final. Street United meanwhile, tried their best to get there by use of underhand methods.
The Arua based side tried and failed in their attempts to use over age players as they were thwarted by former Cranes international Hakim Magumba. Magumba who is part of the technical team scouting for the best talent in every region, was forced to personally intervene after players who had been ejected resurfaced on the pitch.
“We were alerted and crosschecked only to realise that the very players we had identified had resurfaced on the pitch minutes later,” an irritated Magumba said after the tournament.
Eventually, Onduparaka progressed from the group and won the tournament with Bida scoring the only goal of the game in the final against All-Stars. Bida was also voted tournament MVP and finished with a tournament high three goals alongside 13- year-old Taban Wijo (Tigers) who immensely impressed despite his team being eliminated in the group stages.
Luwero was lit up by 13-year-old Lillian Mutuuzo of Entebbe Creamland S.S who was crowned girls` MVP. The pint sized winger sent the crowd in raptures every time she touched the ball and beat defenders for fun.
Her displays are down to the hardwork and devotion she puts in.
“I am always the first to show up for training and the last to leave the pitch,” said the S.2 student.