Bondo University hosts successful 2015 KUSA Games



This past week saw a lot of sporting activity at Bondo University which is situated in Bondo town in Western Kenya.  The annual Kenya Universities Sports Association festival came to an end this weekend when hundreds of participants took part in 15 different disciplines that included football, hockey and fortunately chess.

The correct name for Bondo University is Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science & Technology (JOOUST).  

The late Jaramogi Oginga Odinga was the patriarch of one of Kenya’s famous political dynasty which also includes Raila Odinga, Oburu Odinga & Ruth Odinga.  Raila Odinga is currently the most well know personality and who is loved passionately by some and hated by some in equal measure.

There are some similarities between the Odinga family and the Kennedy family as both are deeply involved in politics.  The Kennedy family remains one of my favorite topics in American history.  The drama and the tragedy in the family makes a gripping story for one to read. 
Books from my library on this iconic American family.

 Enough of politics and back to chess.

The 2015 KUSA Games for chess attracted a total of 84 players from 14 universities which once again goes to show that chess has a huge following in Kenya.  

In the Men’s section the top 3 places were as follows;

Technical University of Kenya - 12.5 points
University of Nairobi - 12.5 points
Masinde Muliro University - 11 points.
 
The victorious TUK Team


 


 Victor Ongono poses with Cecilia Nyambura

 In the Ladies section which was very well attended with 25 players the top 3 places were as follows;

South Eastern Kenya University - 12.5.
University of Nairobi - 10.
Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University - 10.

In the Men’s section Sinoya Evans from Masinde Muliro University of Science & Technology was top with 5/5 points.
Evans Sinoya (left) in action during the 57th Nairobi Chess Club Championship
In the Ladies section Isabella Asiema of Strathmore powered her way to victory with a clean 6/6.
Isabella Asiema in a past event
Action

More ladies

And even more ladies




Isabella Asiema in the middle
Final standing for the ladies
I am delighted on one hand to see so many chess players coming out to participate.  I am however saddened to see that so many talented players ignoring the many chess tournaments that we have.  In most events you might find a few students taking part from one or two universities.

The only reason for this is sheer apathy from the university students themselves.  The recently concluded Kenya National Championship only attracted a total of 84 players.  Just imagine if the universities had joined in.  We would have had over 150 players taking part in Kenya’s most prestigious event.  

The 2015 Kenya National Championship had a super attractive prize for players under 21 years of age.  The top player in the ladies and open section would qualify for a fully sponsored trip to Seychelles for the 2015 Africa Junior Chess Championship which is set for 27th December 2015 to 6th January 2016.  If this prize does not attract you then what will?  Just makes me wish that I could be a university student again…………We certainly did not have these kind of events in the 1980s.
Kenya’s representative in the Africa Junior will be Riya Shah who is a student in Aga Khan Academy and Moses Maina.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Victor Ongono who took these photos for the report.

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