• Champions Nairobi Water and former holders National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) occupy the top two places.
• Starlets' players are looking to join KDF, Nairobi Water, NCPB.
Rising Starlets coach Andrew Juma is worried that inexperience could dampen their quest for the Kenya Handball Federation national league title.
Juma's charges are one of the few teams comprised of teenagers, drawn from Dagoretti Mixed High School. Starlets’ oldest player is only 17 years.
Rising Starlets sit third on the log with four points from two wins and an equal number of losses. Champions Nairobi Water and former holders National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) occupy the top two places.
Juma said his team has shown that they have what it takes to battle for the title but observed that their more experienced opponents pose a major threat.
Last weekend, Juma's charges succumbed to both Nairobi Water and NCPB, falling 15-45 and 18-43 respectively.
“They were good and competitive matches. Those two teams are very good, having won the East and Central Africa Championship title before. Apart from our poor ball handling and lack of speed, our other major undoing was inexperience,” said Juma.
Nairobi Water' tactician Jack Ochieng also tipped Starlets to greatness, adding that they have good players who, with enough preparations, will fulfil their potential soon.
Ochieng applauded the teenagers for their aggressiveness after managing 15 goals against the champions.
“I admire the Starlets' style of play. We were a little out of our element. Otherwise, they would be lucky to have scored 10 goals. When such young teams play in the league, they get experience which will give them an upper hand during the school games. Given the right training, they will become one of our best players,” said Ochieng.
Coach Juma also revealed that some of Starlets players are looking to join established rivals such as NCPB, Nairobi Water, Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) and Mt. Kenya University after they are done with high school.
“I always remind the girls that there is something ahead of them and that they should bring forth their ‘A’ game in every match. After school, they will be looking to join universities on scholarships and I am glad some of them have been marketing their skills. This opportunity to play in the league is definitely a golden chance for them,” he added.
Aside from Starlets, Inspired Boys and Warriors are also made up of young budding players.