Lawmaker Irene Mayaka backs Rising Starlets World Cup bid
Lawmaker Irene “Renee” Mayaka has backed the Kenya U20 Women’s national football team to qualify for the Women’s World Cup.
The nominated MP shared her thoughts after watching the team, dubbed Rising Starlets, convincingly beat their Angola counterparts 6-1 in an entertaining match at the Nyayo stadium.
A diehard Shabana FC fan, the politician, commended the ladies for the splendid performance against the southern Africa opponents, which excited the fans at the stadium and wished them well ahead of the return leg clash.
“You have really impressed me and made Kenyans proud with this performance. Kenyans are backing you. Please go to Angola and finish the job. We want to see you playing at the World Cup,” she said.
“We are here to support you. I have seen what you are able to do and want to assure each one of you that you are in a position to make a professional career out of football. Work hard and go for it.”
The Rising Starlets were in a class of their own in that game and the result inches the team closer to securing a historic qualification to the Women’s World Cup.
Valerie Nekesa helped herself to a hattrick with Charity Midewo adding a brace as Beldine Odemba’s girls put the Angolans to the sword.
Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba who was also in attendance during the game, was also impressed with the perfomance and outcome, so much that she awarded the team a Sh300,000 token.
The rematch between these two teams will be staged in Luanda, Angola’s capital next weekend. The aggregate winner of the match will secure qualification to the penultimate round of this phase where a dual between either Cameroon or Botswana awaits.
The result comes barely two weeks after the seniior women’s team dubbed Harambee Starlets, eliminated bigwigs Cameroon from the Africa Women Cup of Nations qualifiers on post match penalties after the two teams had settled on a one-all draw.