•Openda said his goal is to secure victories and solidify their chances of finishing among the top contenders.
•Blazers will face Malawi's Capital Braves on November 21 before concluding their pool assignments with a match against GRA on November 24.
Blazers head coach Joseph Openda says he is eyeing a podium finish in the Africa Club for Club Champions (ACCC) tournament slated for November 18-26 in Blantyre, Malawi.
The 23-time Kenya Hockey Union (KHU) Premier League champions, placed in Pool B, will kick off their campaign against Nigeria's Kada Queens on Saturday.
Openda said his goal is to secure victories and solidify their chances of finishing among the top contenders.
"I am expecting a good outing in Malawi. My main objective is to finish somewhere on top. Back then when we were winning many league titles, we would enter such competitions with confidence, knowing we would be number one. Now, things are different, and we hope to finish at the top," said Openda.
The team is set to fly to Malawi on Thursday for the women's 25th edition of the annual tournament. The current champions are the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), who won the 24th edition held in Nairobi in February.
Reflecting on their performance in the previous edition, where they narrowly missed the podium with a 3-2 defeat to Ghana's Army Ladies, Openda stressed the need for improvement.
''We must take the lessons we learned from the 24th edition and make them our strengths. We can't afford to make the same mistakes in this new edition. We must improve," said Openda.
Openda also acknowledged the impact of weather on their run in the competition, noting that adapting to the different conditions in Malawi would be crucial.
'Half of the girls taking part in ACCC were in South Africa for the Paris 2024 Olympics qualifiers. Some of them were not feeling well because of the change in weather conditions. If they adapt well in Malawi, then will have a smooth run,'' he added.
Blazers will face Malawi's Capital Braves on November 21 before concluding their pool assignments with a match against GRA on November 24.
On the other hand, their Kenyan Counterparts Lakers, drawn in Pool A, will launch their campaign against Nigeria's Delta Queens and face Malawi's Scorpions and Genetrix in subsequent matches.
In the men's category, Kenya's only representatives, Western Jaguars, placed in Pool 'B,' are optimistic about their chances against Malawi's Scorpions and Parachute Battalion.