Coronavirus: Three matches a week enough to finish KPL season - Shimanyula

Nicholas Kipkirui of Gor Mahia vs AFC Leopards.Goal Kenya.

Kakamega Homeboyz chairman Cleophas Shimanyula has maintained the Kenyan Premier League (KPL) should be played to the end to determine the winner.

The Kenyan top-flight is currently suspended indefinitely owing to the effects caused by the coronavirus and the situation has elicited mixed reactions from stakeholders, with one side stating the league should be cancelled and leaders Gor Mahia handed the trophy, others feel it should be declared null and void, while some want it to resume and be played to the end.

Shimanyula, whose Homeboyz are sitting third on the 17-team table, seven points below K’Ogalo but with a game in hand, says the only way to satisfy all teams in the league is to make sure the remaining nine rounds of matches are played if and when Covid-19 pandemic is contained.

“We only have nine rounds of matches to end the season and this can be done with five weeks if the league resumes today,” Shimanyula told Goal on Friday.

“All we need to do is make sure that we play three matches in a week, play on Saturday, Tuesday and even Thursday and the league will be done, and we will have rightful winners and we will also have teams to relegate.

“But if we insist on ending the league and awarding Gor Mahia the trophy, then we are inviting trouble, I say trouble because like my team Homeboyz, we still have a chance to win the trophy, Gor Mahia are ahead of us on seven points and who knows, they can lose matches and we still catch up with them.

“The race at the top is still wide open, even Tusker and KCB have a good chance to go for the title, we cannot just award Gor Mahia the trophy because they are sitting at the top, we should also look at the teams below them, what margin Gor Mahia have ahead of them and then we can be in a position to state otherwise.

“At the bottom, those teams going to relegation will also not be happy if we end the league, because some feel they can win the nine matches and stay up, it is a very delicate matter and the only way to have this solved is to make sure that the league resumes when we contain Covid-19 and play the remaining matches.”

Shimanyula also took the opportunity to thank Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta for his timely move to provide financial assistance to the players during the lockdown period.

“It is a good gesture from the President because our players have really suffered since the league was halted,” Shimanyula continued.

“Some don’t have a second place to get earnings and the move by the President is a good one, we have already submitted the list of our players as requested by FKF and we hope they will get the help as stated by Kenyatta.”