Vihiga Queens

Vihiga Queens players celebrate their goal against Morocco's Asfar FC during their CAF Women’s Champions League match at Al Salaam Stadium in Cairo on November 9, 2021.

| Pool |

Vihiga Queens’ illustrious seven years in top-flight football

What you need to know:

  • On the team's performance in Egypt, where it won only one of the three group-stage matches, Ottichilo lauded the Queens for their bravery and asked the players to be "proud of themselves".

For Vihiga Queens, it has been seven years of roaring on the pitch, nationally bagging the Women Premier League title three consecutive times and still soldiering on.

The latest representation at the inaugural CAF Women's Champion League in Egypt was another feather in their cap. South Africa's Mamelodi Sundowns won the title on Friday after beating Ghana's Hasaacas Ladies 2-0 in the final.

Vihiga Queens striker Tereza Engesha speaks during a pre-match press conference on November 11, 2021 in Cairo, Egypt on the eve of their Caf Champions League Group B match against Rivers Angels of Nigeria.

Vihiga Queens’ journey in the sports world dates back to January 2014, when the team envisioned growing to become the leading football club in Kenya, Africa and beyond.

It aimed to create, develop and promote opportunities for the youth through sporting activities - driven under the motto The Legacy Makers.

Seven years later, the girls say they are determined to grow the club’s history.

Back in Vihiga, the girls train in the poorly developed Kidundu stadium. The returns are impressive results on the national platform.

The club plays home matches at the Mumias Sports Complex and nets its sponsorships from the Vihiga County government and contributions from well-wishers.

In addition to the three Football Kenya Federation women Premier League titles Vihiga also boast of the 2021 CAF Women Champions League qualifiers (Cecafa region) trophy.

Vihiga Queens

Vihiga Queens striker Tereza Engesha dribbles the ball during their CAF Women's Champions League match against River Angels of Nigeria at the 30 June Stadium on November 12, 2021.

Photo credit: Pool |

The team's captain, Enez Mango, says featuring in the Champions League in Egypt helped them draw massive lessons.

"We look forward to making advanced preparations so that we can feature again in the second edition," she says.

On their elimination from the group stage, Mango said the event was very competitive and they would up their game next time.

Among the club's key players are strikers Jentrix Shikangwa, 20, and Tereza Engesha, 22, both of whom have been influential for the side, while Lilian Awuor, 21, was named 2020/21 FKF Women Cup best goalkeeper.

Former midfielder Cynthia Shilwatso became the first Kenyan woman player to play professional football in Spain when she joined Logrono two seasons ago.

As a result of featuring in the inaugural CAF Champions League for women, three other players are on the verge of making a move abroad.

Vihiga Queens

Part of the action between Vihiga Queens and Mamelodi Sundowns during their Group B match of the inaugural CAF Women’s Champions League tournament on November 6, 2021.

Photo credit: Pool | Caf

Reports indicate that Shikangwa, Engesha and Awuor are on the verge of joining unnamed clubs in Europe after their impressive run in Egypt.

County support

Vihiga Queens has for the last five seasons been supported by the Vihiga County government, a gesture that other counties can emulate to help the country develop sports at the grassroots.

As a result of their sterling performance, Vihiga Governor Wilber Ottichilo has appealed to the national government to help the county build a modern stadium in honour of Vihiga Queens.

Vihiga Queens

Vihiga County Governor Wilber Ottichilo addresses Vihiga Queens players and officials when he hosted the team after jetting back from Egypt on November 17, 2021 where they had competed in the inaugural CAF Women's Champions League.

Photo credit: Pool |

Ottichilo says he has applied for a Sh200 million grant from the Ministry of Sports to enable the county to complete the construction of Hamisi Stadium.

The county government has pumped in Sh35 million for the first phase.

Ottichilo says the stadium should be ready to host matches next year if they get the money.

Speaking when he hosted the Vihiga Queens for a luncheon on Wednesday, Ottichilo said the application for the grant had been received by Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed.

Vihiga has two teams in the top-flight league - Vihiga Bullets (Football Kenya Federation Premier League) and Vihiga Queens (Women Premier League) - while Vihiga United are in the men's second-tier league, the National Super League.

The governor says the land dispute that had rocked the construction of the stadium was resolved, while the Gisambai-Hamisi-Shamakhokho road has been diverted to allow the expansion of the facility.

"I am sure we will succeed and complete the stadium because we want it ready next year for use. Our future is in the youth," the governor said.

He also said the Sh40 million sports kitty from which Vihiga Queens and other teams draw funding will be enhanced beginning in the 2022/23 financial year.

"With increased allocation, this will enable us to sponsor many teams and develop talent. This, in addition to a fully fledged national stadium, will help nurture more talent locally," he said.

On the team's performance in Egypt, where it won only one of the three group-stage matches, Ottichilo lauded the Queens for their bravery and asked the players to be "proud of themselves".


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