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Jaguar's Ludiali eyes next year's Africa Cup qualifiers

The 20- year-old plays for Western Jaguars in the men's hockey Premier League.

In Summary

• The Maseno School alumnus played for Kenya national under-17 men's team in the Youth Olympic Qualifiers in Algiers, Algeria in July 2018. 

• Ludiali made his senior national debut in 2019 during the Olympic qualifiers in South Africa as Kenya finished fifth in the six-team tournament. 

Ivan Ludiali in a past international tournament.
Ivan Ludiali in a past international tournament.
Image: /COURTESY

Fast-rising international midfielder Ivan Ludiali has declared his intention of representing the country both at the African  Cup of Nations qualifiers and Junior World Cup next year.

The 20-year-old plays for Western Jaguars in the men's hockey Premier League. Ludiali is a Bio-Systems engineering student at the University of Nairobi.

The Maseno School alumnus played for Kenya national U-17 men's team in the Youth Olympic Qualifiers in Algiers, Algeria in July 2018. Three months Later, he represented Africa at the World Youth Olympics in Argentina.

 

Ludiali made his senior national debut in 2019 during the Olympic qualifiers in South Africa as Kenya finished fifth in the six-team tournament. The midfielder played in all but one match.

The North East African qualifiers were supposed to be played in May this year but were  rescheduled to January in Nairobi because of the coronavirus pandemic. The Junior Hockey World Cup will take place in September the same year.

Ludiali said he is focused on being fit and believes he's  well equipped to feature at both events should he be given chance.

"For the qualifiers, my target is to be fit for the tournament. I think after my first assignment with the senior side, I am more confident and I expect the players to play with renewed vigour. Do not forget there is a Junior World Cup  which I would like to go and play in India."

Ludiali  was named the Most Promising Player in the Kenya Hockey Union League last season. He said Kenya should not be complacent ahead of the qualifiers and must maximise on home advantage to book the ticket for the continental showpiece.

"Playing at home  is an added bonus because this is an environment  we are used to and there will be no need to adapt. From experience in a round robin format,  all teams are a threat and therefore we should be on top of our game."