Kenya women's national volleyball team

The Kenya women's national volleyball team, the Malkia Strikers, represents Kenya in international volleyball competitions. Kenya has dominated the African continent since the 1990s, winning the Women's African Volleyball Championship a record nine times. They have qualified three times for the Olympics; in 2000, 2004 and for the postponed 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

Kenya
Flag of Kenya.svg
Nickname(s)Malkia Strikers
AssociationKenya Volleyball Federation
ConfederationCAVB
Head coachPaul Bitok
FIVB ranking24 (as of 12 June 2021)
Uniforms
Home
Away
Summer Olympics
Appearances3 (First in 2000)
Best result11th (2000, 2004)
World Championship
Appearances6 (First in 1994)
Best result13th place (1994, 1998)
Honours
All-Africa Games
Gold medal – first place 1991 Cairo Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 1995 Harare Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 1999 Johannesburg Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 2015 Brazzaville Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 2019 Rabat Team Competition
Silver medal – second place 1987 Nairobi Team Competition
Bronze medal – third place 2003 Abuja Team Competition
Bronze medal – third place 2007 Algiers Team Competition
Bronze medal – third place 2011 Maputo Team Competition
African Championship
Gold medal – first place 1991 Cairo Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 1993 Lagos Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 1995 Nairobi Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 1997 Cairo Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 2005 Lagos Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 2007 Nairobi Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 2011 Nairobi Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 2013 Nairobi Team Competition
Gold medal – first place 2015 Nairobi Team Competition
Silver medal – second place 2003 Nairobi Team Competition
Silver medal – second place 2017 Yaoundé Team Competition
Silver medal – second place 2019 Cairo Team Competition

Kenya also has a beach volleyball team, who were the only women's team at the Tokyo Olympics. Kenya's women's sitting volleyball team did not qualify for Tokyo.

HistoryEdit

Women were not invited to play volleyball at the All-Africa Games until 1978. Those games were in Algiers, Algeria and Kenya did not send a team.[1] The team was there in 1991 for the Volleyball at the 1991 All-Africa Games where they were first.[2] They were also in Cairo when eight teams were present for the 1991 Women's African Volleyball Championship and Kenya again took the gold medal.[3]

Violet Barasa, as national team captain, lead the national team to its appearances at the 2000 Summer Olympics and the 2004 Summer Olympics.[4] At both events they finished eleventh.[5]

In 2006 the team's coach was the Japanese coach Sadatoshi Sugawara who was assisted by Paul Bitok. They contested the FIVB World Championships in Japan although the team was said to lack professional players as the chosen team were students or players who were based in Japan.[6]

In 2007 their coach Sammy Kirongo led them to a seventh Women's African Volleyball Championship victory. That year's championships was in Nairobi and the final was against Algeria. The Kenyan team included Brackcides Agala, Janet Wanja, Dorcas Ndasaba and Catherine Wanjiru. Mildred Odwako was said to be the "best digger" and Janet Wanja was the "best setter". Dorcas Ndasaba was judged "best player" after she gained the final point to deliver victory in straight sets.[7]

In 2008 they failed to qualify for the 2008 Summer Olympics after they were beaten by Algeria and four years later Algeria again denied them qualification for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.[8]

In 2015 Brackcides Agala was the captain of the team and Janet Wanja assisted her. The team announced that they refused to play for the 2015 FIVB World Grand Prix in Canberra after several victories. The players were annoyed that they had not been paid money that had been promised by the Kenya Volleyball Federation. The boycott was successful and the team played and won against Peru. However, the KVF were not pleased and when the team's were announced for the 2016 Summer Olympics neither Khadambi or her assistant Janet Wanja were asked to the qualifying matches[9] and the team failed to qualify.[8]

In 2020, under the new head coach of Paul Bitok, Kenya's women's volleyball team won the gold medal at the African Games[10] and they qualified for the postponed 2020 Summer Olympics which was the first time in sixteen years.[5]

2020 OlympicsEdit

Kenya women's volleyball team qualified for the postponed 2020 Summer Olympics by winning the pool round with three match points and securing an outright berth at the African Olympic Qualification Tournament in Yaoundé, Cameroon, marking the nation's return to the Olympics for the first time since Athens 2004.[5]

The chosen players names were revealed on 26 June 2021.[11] The Olympic team included the veteran Mercy Moim as captain and[12] Jane Wacu also made the team,[13] but former players Violet Makuto and Elizabeth Wanyama were not included.[14] Kenya's "Most Valued Player" Brackcides Agala was included in the beach volleyball team.[15][9] The team received additional coaching from six Brazilian coaches who visited Kenya[12] and the team was then sent to Nairobi where they received additional coaching from the Brazilian coach Luizomar de Moura [pt]. The other teams in their group in Tokyo are the home team Japan, Serbia, Brazil, Korea and the Dominican Republic.[13]

The team set off from Kenya for the Olympics in Tokyo in three batches to try and minimise the chances of being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.[16] The team's captain Mercy Moim was chosen to be one of Kenya's flagbearers at the Olympics opening ceremony (Moim was the second woman to be given this honour following archer Shazad Anwar in 2016).[17]

Their opening match was on 25 July in Tokyo against Japan.[18] Surprisingly Paul Bitok was not on the match's touchline, but Brazilian coach Luizomar de Moura [pt] was announced as the head coach. He spoke to the press via the team manager.[19] The team lost their first match against Japan in straight sets.[20]

2020 Olympic squadEdit

Squad as announced in June 2021.[11]

ResultsEdit

Olympic GamesEdit

World ChampionshipEdit

World CupEdit

FIVB World Grand PrixEdit

Women's African Volleyball ChampionshipEdit

All-Africa GamesEdit


2021 Beach volleyball Olympic teamEdit

Kenya also has a women's national beach volleyball team.[26] The team that gained Kenya qualification for the postponed 2020 Summer Olympics was Yvonne Wavinya, Brackcides Agala, Phosca Kasisi and Gaudencia Makokha. They qualified when they won at the African Continental Cup Finals in Morocco in 2021.[27] They gained victory in a final against the Nigeria women's national volleyball team. Wavinga and Kasisi beat Tochukwu Nnoruga and Albertina Francis 2-0 while Agala and Makokha beat the other Nigerian pair of Francisca Ikhiede and Amara Uchechukwu 2-1.[27]

Kenya's beach volleyballers were in the four Continental Cup winners with Argentina, Cuba and China. Kenya has never had a beach volleyball team at the Olympics and they are only the fourth African country to send a team.[27] The four players who qualified will make up Kenya's Olympic beach volleyball team chosen by the coach Sammy Mulinge.[28] They will compete initially with the teams from Brazil, the US and Latvia in pool D at the postponed 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.[29] The volleyballers stayed in Mombasa for training before flying to Tokyo. They were the African champions, but the pandemic meant that many of their future opponents had been able to play more matches.[30]

2021 Sitting Volleyball Paralympic teamEdit

Kenya's sitting volleyball team failed to qualify in the round robin contests in Kigali in September 2019. Rwanda won the place putting Egypt into second place in the final.[31]

Previous squadsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Women Volleyball III All Africa Games 1978 Alger (ALG) – Winner Algeria". www.todor66.com. Retrieved 19 July 2021.
  2. ^ a b "Women Volleyball V All Africa Games 1991 Cayro (EGY) – Winner Kenya". www.todor66.com. Retrieved 19 July 2021.
  3. ^ a b "Women Volleyball V Africa Championship 1991 Cairo (EGY) Winner Kenya". www.todor66.com. Retrieved 19 July 2021.
  4. ^ "Volleyball matches in Kenya postponed to honour Baraza". www.fivb.org. 16 February 2007. Retrieved 14 July 2021.
  5. ^ a b c d e f "Argentina, Kenya Tokyo-bound with first of week's continental Olympic tickets". FIVB. 9 January 2020. Retrieved 10 January 2020.
  6. ^ "Kenya Drops Two Key Players from World Championships Team". www.fivb.org. Retrieved 14 July 2021.
  7. ^ "Kenya Wins the trophy and secured World Cup Berth". web.archive.org. 31 August 2009. Retrieved 13 July 2021.
  8. ^ a b c d e "Overview – Kenya – FIVB World Grand Prix 2016". worldgrandprix.2016.fivb.com. Retrieved 19 July 2021.
  9. ^ a b Makh, Agnes; ia (12 October 2020). "Kenya: The Triumph and Tribulations of Brackcides Agala, Kenyan Volleyball's Icon". allAfrica.com. Retrieved 13 July 2021.
  10. ^ "PAUL BITOK – Trailblazing Volleyball Coach". Parents Magazine. 10 January 2020. Retrieved 12 July 2021.
  11. ^ a b "Kenya unveil roster for the Tokyo Olympics". fivb.com. 26 June 2021. Retrieved 26 June 2021.
  12. ^ a b Ayodi, Ayumba (12 July 2021). "Kenya: Tokyo Another Feather in the Cap for Coach Bitok, Moim and Wacu". allAfrica.com. Retrieved 12 July 2021.
  13. ^ a b "Kenya Unveil Roster For The Tokyo Olympics". fivb.com. 26 June 2021. Retrieved 8 July 2021.
  14. ^ "Kenyan volleyball team keen to make up for lost time at Olympics – Xinhua | English.news.cn". www.xinhuanet.com. Retrieved 10 July 2021.
  15. ^ "Kenyan volleyball team departs for Tokyo Olympics – Xinhua | English.news.cn". www.xinhuanet.com. Retrieved 14 July 2021.
  16. ^ "PHOTOS: Kenya's volleyball queens step out in style for Olympic showdown". Sports Africa. Retrieved 19 July 2021.
  17. ^ "Moim and Amonde selected as Kenya's flagbearers for Opening Ceremony". www.insidethegames.biz. 18 July 2021. Retrieved 27 July 2021.
  18. ^ "Kenya Unveil Roster For The Tokyo Olympics". This is Volleyball. 26 June 2021. Retrieved 19 July 2021.
  19. ^ Japan, Bismarck Mutahi in Tokyo. "Volleyball: Malkia Strikers' Wacu exudes confidence ahead of Japan showdown - Euro2020". Olympics. Retrieved 25 July 2021.
  20. ^ "Malkia Strikers go down to Japan in Olympics opener". Citizentv.co.ke. Retrieved 25 July 2021.
  21. ^ "FIVB Volleyball Women's World Cup – Results And Ranking". FIVB. 29 September 2019. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  22. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Kenya claim historic 9th African Nations crown in style". Confederation Africaine de Volleyball. 20 June 2015. Archived from the original on 24 September 2018.
  23. ^ "Egypt defeated Kenya in early final". Confederation Africane De Volleyball. 17 August 2003. Archived from the original on 9 May 2008.
  24. ^ "Results Final". Confederation Africane De Volleyball. Archived from the original on 24 September 2018.
  25. ^ "2019 Women's African Nations Championship- Final". Confederation Africane De Volleyball. Archived from the original on 16 July 2019.
  26. ^ Ernest Ndunda (16 January 2021). "Kenya to compete in annulled Beach Volleyball Olympic qualifiers". The Standard. Retrieved 15 April 2021.
  27. ^ a b c volleyballworld.com. "Argentina, China, Cuba and Kenya take Olympic berths". volleyballworld.com. Retrieved 20 July 2021.
  28. ^ "Mulinge names beach volleyball squads for Olympic qualifiers". Citizentv.co.ke. Retrieved 20 July 2021.
  29. ^ Makh, Agnes; ia (6 July 2021). "Kenya's Beach Volleyball Team in Tough Olympic Pool". allAfrica.com. Retrieved 21 July 2021.
  30. ^ "Kenya's volleyball team ready for Olympic action". Citizentv.co.ke. Retrieved 25 July 2021.
  31. ^ "Rwandan women's sitting volleyball team qualify for Tokyo 2020". www.insidethegames.biz. 17 September 2019. Retrieved 22 July 2021.
  32. ^ [dead link] "Women Volleyball World Cup 1991 – Teams Composition – Kenya". Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  33. ^ [dead link] "Women Volleyball XIII World Championship 1994 – Teams Composition – Kenya". todor66.com. Archived from the original on 27 June 2015. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  34. ^ [dead link] "Women Volleyball XIII World Championship 1998 – Teams Composition. – Kenya". todor66.com. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  35. ^ "Kenyan volleyball team at the 2000 Summer Olympics". Archived from the original on 17 April 2020. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  36. ^ "Women Volleyball XIII World Championship 2002 – Teams Composition. – Kenya". todor66.com. Archived from the original on 27 December 2015. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  37. ^ "Kenya women's volleyball roster at FIVB.com". 2004 Athens. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  38. ^ "Women Volleyball World Cup 2007 – Teams Composition. – Kenya". Archived from the original on 24 October 2007. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  39. ^ "Women Volleyball World Cup 2011 – Teams Composition. – Kenya". Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  40. ^ "MALKIA STRIKERS JETS OFF TO JAPAN FOR THE 2018 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS". Kenya Volleyball Federation (KVF). 20 September 2018. Retrieved 2 October 2018.
  41. ^ "Kenya Team Profile". FIVB. Retrieved 2 October 2018.

External linksEdit