Morocco will not bid to host AFCON 2019: sports minister

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) is receiving bids to host the tournament, until Friday this week. The winning bid is expected to be announced on January 9, after a meeting of the Executive

The organisation of the African Cup of Nations 2019 (AFCON 2019) has received a fresh setback, after Morocco on Wednesday said it would not bid to host the tournament.



Morocco, which this year lost a bid to host the 2026 World Cup, had been seen as one of the leading contenders to host Africa’s biggest football tournament.



But Moroccan Minister of Youth and Sports, Rachid Talbi El Alami told AFP that the North African nation would not attempt to host the tournament, that had originally been awarded to Cameroon.



READ MORE: CAF withdraws hosting rights for AFCON 2019 from Cameroon

“Morocco did not intend to apply to host the 2019 African Cup of Nations and will not do so,” the minister said.



The Confederation of African Football (CAF) is receiving bids to host the tournament, until Friday this week. The winning bid is expected to be announced on January 9, after a meeting of the Executive Committee in Dakar, Senegal.



Possible hosts



Now that Morocco has taken itself out of contention, fans will hope that other African nations that have the infrastructure to host the expanded tournament featuring 24 teams for the first time, will step up and bid to host.



Egypt last week said they would not launch a bid to host AFCON 2019 if Morocco expresses interest.

South Africa’s football federation has also confirmed that it is considering a bid to host the tournament. The Southern African nation is the only country to have hosted a World Cup, which features 32 teams.



ALSO READ: Congo sports ministry denies reports of bid to host AFCON 2019

With less than six months to the tournament, that will be held in June for the first time, time is surely running out for CAF to find a host.



SUGGESTED READING: Is it time for CAF to revise process of awarding AFCON hosting rights?

Bomi County won the 2018-19 County Soccer Meet after 9 years

Bomi Copyright -Via Twitter @liberianobs
Bomi County won the 2018-19 County Soccer Meet last Sunday at the Samuel Kanyon Doe Sports Complex. The 1-1 draw went into extra time and it became evident that penalty kicks would settle the deadlock. Bomi County has clinched the trophee after beating Margibi County 4-3 in post-match penalty kicks after regular time 1-1. The 90 minutes plus the extra 30 minutes of play had all the beauty of the game. Both goalkeepers were excellent and kept their team in the game. “It was simply a matter of Bomi winning the match,” said a native of Bomi County. “The 4-3 victory was part of Bomi’s plan, and now let’s see if someone can decide to draw attention to the Blue Lake.” In recent County Meets, Bomi has had difficulties in winning the crown and came to the limelight after beating River Gee 5-2 in 2009. Bomi walked away with LD 500,000 as cash prize, while Margibi took home half of the winner’s price. In the Kickball grand final, Grand Bassa edged Margibi County 2-0 home run, while Nimba County beat Lofa County 7-6 in penalties to win the inaugural edition of the women football in the County Meet. Grand Finals results Football Margibi 3 - Bomi 4 Kickball Margibi 0 - Grand Bassa 1

Serena Williams makes strong start in Australian Open

Williams finished the match in just 49 minutes on her second match point when Maria, who is also her neighbour, sent a backhand wide and the American will next play Canadian Eugenie Bouchard.

Serena Williams made a strong comeback in her quest for a record-equallying 24th Grand Slam singles title in Melbourne Australia on Tuesday.

The tennis legend won 6-0 6-2 victory over German Tatjana Maria in the first round of the Australian Open.

The seven-times Australian Open champion was pregnant when she won the last of her 23 grand slam titles at Melbourne Park.

Playing her first Grand Slam since her rant against the umpire at last year’s U.S. Open final, the 37-year old lost only 24 points against Maria.

Williams finished the match in just 49 minutes on her second match point when Maria, who is also her neighbour, sent a backhand wide. The American will next play Canadian Eugenie Bouchard.

Reuters

A second African Golden Ball for Mohamed Salah

Mohamed Salah was named African Player of the Year for the second year in a row. A more than logical choice according to former Senegalese international and double African Golden Ball El Hadji Ousseyn

Mohamed Salah was named African Player of the Year for the second year in a row. A more than logical choice according to former Senegalese international and double African Golden Ball El Hadji Ousseynou Diouf.

In this weeks’s program, the Egyptian striker was named African Player of the Year for the second time in a row. The reward for a breathtaking season. We spoke about this with a former winner, the Senegalese El Hadji Diouf.

It was a smashing start at the Champions League group stage for Wydad, winning 5-2 against Asec Mimosas. Defending champions Tunis Esperance were held in check in Guinea. Find all the results in this program.

And then hero of South Africa’s qualification for the 1998 World Cup. Phil Masinga, African champion in 1996, died on Sunday. Sad news for African football.

Egypt launches preps for AFCON 2019

Eight stadium including that of Cairo, Alexandria, Ismaila and Suez have already been named to host the tournament.

The Egyptian sports ministry and Football Federation on Sunday launched preparations for the 2019 edition of the African Cup of Nations.

The continent’s largest sporting event will take place from June 15 to July 13.

“Organizing the CAN in three to four months is a great sign of confidence from FIFA President Gianni Infantino and my colleagues at CAF. Egypt has got sixteen votes against one, which shows great confidence in the country, Egypt and our economy, “ said President of the Egyptian Football Federation, Hani Abu Rida.

Egyptian Prime Minister, Mustafa Madbouli will chair a committee made up of ministers to facilitate work of the federation.

Officials say the opening ceremony and first match will take place in the 74,000 capacity Cairo International stadium.

The stadium was renovated before the North African nation hosted the 2006 edition of the tournament.

Eight stadium including that of Cairo, Alexandria, Ismaila and Suez have already been named to host the tournament.

Egypt can boast of a multitude of hotels, two international airports, in Cairo and near Alexandria as well as a road network linking the main cities.

AFP

Uganda's lacrosse players target youth to grow the sport

Ugandan youth are being taught to play Lacrosse as part of the country’s efforts to popularize the sport .

Ugandan youth are being taught to play Lacrosse as part of the country’s efforts to popularize the sport and improve upon their performances at the World Championships in 2014 and 2018.

In a sunny afternoon in Jinja, Uganda, Andrew Mamawi is getting his players in gear.

Mamawi played for the Ugandan lacrosse team at the World Championships in 2014 and 2018. Uganda is the first African country to field a team at the sport’s penultimate event.

“It showed me a lot of things that sports can do. After playing for a while in Kampala, I came back to the community that raised me, so what I didn’t have, what I didn’t get as a child is what I wanted to give back to the community,” said Lacrosse Coach and player, Andrew Mamawi.

The sport was first introduced in the East African nation in 2012 by an American representative of the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL).

Secretary of Uganda Lacrosse Association, Donald Atuhire said Uganda is at the forefront, while the rest of Africa is just waiting them to expand

“It’s a very challenging sport, it’s fast and requires a lot of skill holding all that equipment, there is a helmet, gloves, a stick, a ball that is very heavy, it needs so much skill in handling it, so we expect if the kids take it up professionally, they could easily get a payment for it,” he added.

Funds to pay players, buy equipment, manage leagues, organize competitions, facilitate travel, and eventually offer college scholarships are raised through the California-based Uganda Lacrosse Foundation or the Uganda Lacrosse Association both formed to help support the country’s niche community of players and fans.

The Cranes Uganda’s national team – hope to play in the Olympics one day. They may just have enough time to launch that offensive, given that the FIL sees 2028 as the year lacrosse will return to the Summer Games.