This weekend has seen the eagerly anticipated kick-off of the Kagame Cup with the leading lights of East African football converging in Dar es Salaam to take part in the championship.
Otherwise known as the Council of East and Central Africa Club Championship, Kagame Cup is hotly contested by the teams which are rightly regarded as the crème de la crème of the region.
Pleasingly, Tanzania has experienced remarkable success in this championship in recent years and in fact our very own Yanga rode roughshod over the opposition last year to win the coveted title prompting irresistible joie de vivre amongst the country’s populace.
This time around though, Yanga, until very recently, found it difficult to hire a coach but in the end, officialdom settled on the Belgian tactician, Tom Saintfiet, who now has the unenviable task of satisfying the ever-demanding Jangwani Street Club’s numerous fans.
However, as has been seen over the years, Kagame Cup has acquired a reputation for almost ferocious competition amongst the various teams.
For instance, the reigning Kenyan champions, Tusker FC, will be jockeying for top honors this year and they will be eager to put a spanner in the works of the well-laid plans of other regional giants.
It is also fair to say that the recently crowned Ugandan champions, URA FC, are not merely coming to Dar es Salaam simply to make up the numbers as their reputation for being redoubtable opponents precedes them.
Not to be left out, the Tanzanian champions, Simba Sports Club are also undoubtedly part of this pantheon of great East African sides, who will be vying for the prestigious title, and naturally, the bragging rights that come with it.
Nevertheless, although we have only considered the clubs which on paper seem almost indestructible, the chances of the other teams should not be hastily dismissed.
Indeed, as we have seen from the jaw-slackening results in African football recently, any team which underestimates the opposition is treading down a slippery slope.
All things considered, we ought to be in for a thrillingly delightful spell of East African football at its most captivating best.
Lloyd Elipokea is a sports commentator