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Sudanese Team Suspended As Age Concerns Dogs CECAFA U-17 Championship

The CECAFA Under-17 youth championship organisers are in a quandary as to how to deal with the problem of overage players, as Sudan and Zanzibar have presented teams with boys suspected to be over the age limit.

The organisers have been caught in a mix because documents presented by the suspected teams are official identification from their respective countries.

Kenya were beaten 3-1 by Zanzibar in their opening match in Juba Stadium, while Sudan beat Tanzania 3-0 on Thursday. But according to a report posted on kenyapremierleague.com, immediately after the Sudanese match, CECAFA ruled that 17 players in the Sudan squad were ineligible and expelled them, stripping the country of their win against Tanzania.

The embarrassment caused by the hosts left CECAFA with no option, but they have handed them a reprieve of sorts by keeping them in the competition, if they can raise a legal team.

The Zanzibar and Ethiopian contingents in Juba are also highly suspect. Although Ethiopia were beaten 4-0 on the opening day by Uganda, the team played four players who were rumoured to be overage, while Zanzibar's 3-1 over Kenya was blighted by the presence of several older looking players in the victorious side.

Twelve teams are participating in the two week championship, and it is not yet known what action CECAFA will take against teams that have already used overage players in their opening matches. So far, Tanzania and Kenya are the only teams seen as having players of the correct age.

James Momanyi, Goal.com