Cranes to learn Cecafa opponents today

Friday June 25 2021

The tournament was last played in 2019 and Uganda lifted the trophy that year. PHOTO/FILE/COURTESY

By Elvis Senono

Having won eight more titles than Kenya which is the next placed team with seven Cecafa titles, Uganda is often considered favourites when the draws for the tournament are held.

That will be the case June 25 when draws for this year’s tournament are held via zoom, according to Cecafa Executive Director, Auka Gacheo. 

By press time, Uganda, Burundi, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Sudan, South Sudan, Djibouti, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Kenya, DR Congo teams had confirmed participation.

Rwanda is also expected to follow suit. 
Uganda goes into the tournament that is expected to run from July 3-18 in Ethiopia as reigning champions.

Only U23s 

The Cranes defeated Eritrea 3-0 to lift the 2019 Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup when the regional tournament was last played.


But with tournament rules changing to allow Under-23 players and three over age players taking part, head coach Morely Byekwaso summoned a much-changed squad that has been residing at Paradise Hotel in Kisaasi since Sunday.

Up to 13 players from the national U20 team Hippos that finished second at the Afcon Under-20 tournament in March were summoned.

The group also had five over age players including goalkeepers Charles Lukwago, South Africa based Ismail Watenga as well as Saidi Kyeyune, Murushid Jjuuko and Yunus Ssentamu from whom he will choose three before the team travels to Ethiopia for the tournament.

It however remains to be seen if Watenga who turns out for South African side Chippa United will take part with his club side involved in promotional playoffs until June 30.

Also on the team is Sentamu, who has scored a league leading 16 goals thus far for Vipers is also joined in the squad by Eric Kambale who netted 15 including eight in his past five appearances for Express.

Number of cecafa titles 
7- Kenya   
4- Ethiopia