Harambee Stars wunderkid Aldrine Kibet eager to mend CECAFA-U18 heartbreak by dominating in COSAFA Cup

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Harambee Stars wunderkid Aldrine Kibet eager to mend CECAFA-U18 heartbreak by dominating in COSAFA Cup

Mark Kinyanjui 20:00 - 24.06.2024

Kibet, who is based in Spain, is eager to make more history in Kenyan colours for the side as they prepare to take on the COSAFA Cup tournament in South Africa.

Rising Stars wunderkind Aldrine Kibet is eagerly anticipating the chance to expand his international experience, as he is set to be named in the final 23-man squad traveling to South Africa for the COSAFA Cup.

The talented forward, who honed his skills at St. Anthony’s High School before moving to Spain's Nastic Soccer Academy last September, has already made a name for himself on the international stage.

Last December, Kibet showcased his goal-scoring prowess by winning the golden boot as the Junior Stars reached the final of the CECAFA U-18 tournament held in Kakamega and Kisumu. His impressive performances continued as he represented Kenya at the U-20 level in the Malawi Four Nations tournament, where they finished as runners-up to the hosts.

Despite his young age, Kibet's international experience has been invaluable. Now, as he prepares to join the U-23 team, he looks forward to learning from more experienced players, even if his role in the tournament might be limited.

"It feels really great to get another opportunity to play for the national team," said Kibet.

"The last time I was here with the Junior Stars (U18s) we didn't achieve what we had intended. We did our best to get into the final, which we lost, but there are many lessons I took from that tournament."

Reflecting on his experiences, including another final loss with the U-20s in Lilongwe, Malawi, Kibet sees these setbacks as vital learning moments.

"In such tournaments, you learn that it’s a journey that should end up with winning," he said. "That kind of winning mentality is what I intend to bring to this team, and hopefully, we can end up having a say in this championship."

Kenya is in Group B for the COSAFA Cup and will face tough competition from Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Comoros. Finishing at the top of the pool will guarantee a place in the semifinals.

Kibet also highlighted the value of international exposure:

"International experience offers more in terms of playing different styles and game plays, which offers me something new every time. At the moment, I believe with the work of mental coaches in Spain, I am well accustomed to working under pressure, and I am very versatile," he added.

Joining him from Nastic Sports Academy in the squad is center-back Amos Wanjala, further strengthening the team’s lineup.

With his eyes set on success, Aldrine Kibet is ready to take the next step in his promising career, bringing with him the lessons learned from past experiences and a determination to make a significant impact at the COSAFA Cup.

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