By Austin Oduor Otieno,
The Council of East Africa and Central Africa was formed in 1926 but properly and officially formed in 1973.Currently it has 12 members though at its formation, only Kenya and Uganda were members.
The Club tournament currently named Kagame Cup began a year later (1974) where Dar es Salaam played host to the inaugural tournament.
Soka25east takes you through a summary of what happened in the unfolding years from 1974 to 1990 in their first part dubbed the ‘Developmental Milestone with specific reference to CECAFA Club Championship)
1974: Dar es Salaam, Tanzania-Simba win inaugural tourney
The host City witnessed the first ever club tournament between different countries, it is also the host for this year’s (2015) tournament.
This year it was played as a league formant with only Kenya, Uganda, Zanzibar and host Country Tanzania participating.
Simba SC of Tanzania became the first team to win the inaugural tournament though unofficially other sources say Abaluhyia FC had won the tournament in the early years.
Sambas topped the league with 5 points, Abaluhyia FC now AFC leopards were second with 3 points while Navy of Zanzibar finished 3rd leaving army boys samba of Uganda at the bottom.
1975: Zanzibar-Zambia joins CECAFA and sends Mufulira Wanderers
It had two groups.
Defending Champions Simba topped Group A to set a semi final date with Zambia’s Mufulira Wanderers who were second in Group B behind Young Africans who set a date with Gor Mahia.
Simba went on to beat Mighty Mufulira Wanderers 2-0 while Young Africans (Yenta) beat Gor Mahia by the same margin.
Yanga however won the final beating rivals samba 2-0 in the Dar derby to be crowned champions
1976-Kampala, Uganda-Malawi and Somalia admitted, Luo Union declared champions
Bata Bullets and MBC Municipality are the new entrants after Malawi and Somalia are admitted respectively.
Favouirites Luo Union (not Gor Mahia) easily won Group A and faced Group B runners up Mseto Sports of Mainland Tanzania. Defending Champions Young Africans won Group B and went on to beat Uganda’s Express 3-0 in the Semis to set a final clash with Luo Union who had earlier demolished Mseto Sports 5-0
Luo Union went on to win the tourney beating Yanga 2-1
1977: Dar es Salaam-Tourney returns to Tanzania as Luo Union wins first back to back
Agondo Lucio who was the top scorer helped Luo Union win the first back to back tournament easily defending the title after a hard-fought 2-1 win over Somalia’s Horseed who had earlier shocked favourites KCC of Uganda 1-0.Luo Union qualified for the finals after beating hosts Simba 1-0.
1978: Kampala welcomes back Tourney with host team KCC winning first tourney
The tournament returned to Kampala, Uganda where 1974 winners Simba had endured a stormy final in Kampala being eliminated by hosts KCC who had forced them to the penalties after a 0-0 draw. Moses Ssentamu, Tom Luwaaga and Philip Omondi (later named after a stadium) all scored to win 3-2.
KCC had eliminated back to back champions Luo Union 3-0 in the semis while Simba edged out Somalia’s Horseed 2-0 for the finals.
1979: Mogadishu-Abaluyia beat KCC 1-0 to lift tourney
Tournament played for the first time in Somalia with Horseed who had reached two consecutive semi finals failing at the same hurdle losing 2-1 to Abaluhyia FC.
Abaluyia FC who representated Kenya as the third team after Kenya Breweries who were first and Gor Mahia who were second failed to enter.
Abaluyia FC took the opportunity and went on to win the tournament beating KCC who had dismissed Bata Bullets of Malawi 1-0.
1980: Blantyre welcomes Tourney as Gor Mahia silence defending champs Abaluhyia FC
Tournament moves to Malawi’s commercial capital of Blantyre, then the capital.
This year witnessed an all Kenyan finals where Gor Mahia shocked defending Champions Abaluhyia FC 3-2 in a pulsating nerve breaking final that saw William Obwaka, currently a Gynecologist in town score a brace.
Limbe leaf of Malawi and Green Buffaloes of Zambia won Groupl A while AFC leopards who were pooled along Gor Mahia won Group B ahead of latter. An interesting tournament where Kenya’s Gor Mahia and AFC leopards both qualified from Group B.
Gor Mahia eliminated hosts Limbe leaf 3-1 in the semi finals while Abaluhyia FC beat Zambia’s Green Buffaloes 1-0 to set an all Kenyan final in Blantyre.
1981: Nairobi-Gor Mahia retain title on home soil beating Simba 1-0
Kenya had two representatives having won the previous edition.
Gor Mahia easily won Group B ahead of Simba SC of Tanzania while AFC leopards finished last in the same group with a point.Limbe leaf and Zambia’s Kabwe Warriors qualified from Group A.
In the semis Gor Mahia eliminated Kabwe Warriors 2-0 while Limbe leaf despite beating Simba 1-0, were disqualified and instead Simba matched on to the finals.
Gor retained their title and followed Luo Union by winning back to back tournament after they edged out Simba of Tanzania 1-0.
1982-Nairobi and Kisumu play host-AFC leopards win it second for Kenya in a row
The tournament did not move away from Kenya and with Kisumu the only addition to the cities,Abaluhyia FC who changed their names to AFC leopards after the then President of Kenya Daniel Moi ordered the banning of all tribal Organizations. Only Gor Mahia survived.
Zimbabwe was admitted at CECAFA and Rio Tinto forced their way up to the final losing to AFC leopards 1-0.
AFC leopards reached the final after shocking back to back winners Gor Mahia 1-0 while Rio Tinto eliminated Yanga 2-1 to reach the finals.
Gor Mahia topped their Group ahead of Yanga in Kisumu while AFC leopards topped Group A ahead of finalists Rio Tinto in Nairobi.
1983: Zanzibar-Leopards third Kenyan team to defend title.
AFC leopards became the third Kenyan Team to easily defend the title beating ADMARC Tigers of Malawi 2-1 in the final.ADMARC Tigers had eliminated Nakivubo Villa 2-1 while AFC leopards edged out KMKM 3-0 in the semis.
Gor mahia and Zimbabwe’s Tornados were eliminated from the group.
1984: Nairobi-Third title in a row for AFC leopards, deny Gor in the final
Tournament returns to Kenya’s capital Nairobi and a repeat of the 1980 finals in Blantyre Malawi where Gor beat AFC leopards.
This time the tidings changed as AFC leopards beat Gor Mahia 2-1 in a tough encounter watched by Kenya’s President Daniel Moi and a host of leaders.
A tournament that saw hot favourites Nkana Red Devils finish 3rd behind AFC leopards and Berec Power of Malawi.
Gor Mahia comfortably topped Group A to meet Malawi’s Berec Power who finished second in group b behind while AFC leopards who went on to beat Uganda’s KCC 1-0 who were second in group A in the semis
1985: Sudan welcomes tournament, Gor-AFC leopards puzzle rages on with Kogallo triumphs
The tournament is first played in Sudan and another rivalry pitting Gor Mahia and AFC leopards is witnessed in Sudanese Capital Khartoum.
Both teams were favourites to reach the finals despite Sudan entering both Al Hilal and Al Mereikh.
Gor Mahia won their Group A with 6 points ahead of Tanzania’s Simba who had 5 points. Host team Al Hilal finished 4th
In Group B AFC Leopards gained a massive 8 points to top the group ahead of hosts AL Mereikh who had 5 points, a point ahead of KMKM.Zambia’s Nkana finished 4th in the group.
Gor Mahia went on to beat hosts Al Mereikh 2-1 in the semi final while AFC leopards edged out Tanzania’s Simba 1-0 to book an all Kenyan Final.
Gor Mahia went on to beat AFC leopards 2-0 in the final match to lift it’s 3rd title.
1986: Dar es Salaam-Al Merreikh re group to win first tourney
After a disappointing show at home losing 1-2 in the semi finals to Gor Mahia,Al Mereikh re energized and won the 1986 edition beating Young Africans(Yanga) 4-2 on post match penalties after the two teams drew 2-2 in normal and extra time.
Mufulira Wanders topped Group B with 7 points ahead of second placed Al Mereikh while AFC leopards topped Group A ahead of hosts Yanga.
Defending Champions Gor Mahia finished a distance 4th in Group B in one of their worst tournament so far.
In the semis Al Mereikh eliminated AFC leopards after ET 1-0 while Yanga edged out favourites Mufulira Wanderers 4-2 on penalties after a 0-0 draw.
1987: Kampala, Uganda-Zambia withdraws team as Nakivubo Villa triumph
Zambia withdrew from CECAFA and ultimately withdrawing their team Green Buffaloes.KMKM of Zanzibar did not enter.
Nakivubo Villa won their first tourney beating defending champions Al Mereikh with a sensational Sula Kato 27th minute strike.
Nakivubo Villa now called Sports Club Villa and Bata Bullets topped Group A while Al Mereikh and Zimbabwe Saints topped Group B,
Sudan who were featuring two teams by virtue of Al Mereikh winning had Al Hila eliminated in the preliminaries finishing 3rd in Group A.
In the semis, Nakivubo Villa had edged out Zimbabwe Saints 2-0 while Al Mereikh silenced Malawi’s Bata Bullets 1-0.
1988: Khartoum-Kenya Breweries win despite finishing 4th in the Kenyan league, Civo Utd and Red Arrows feature
Kenya Breweries now Tusker FC went on to beat host team Al Mereikh 2-0 to lift the tournament despite finishing fourth in the local Kenya league.
A tournament that saw Civo United and Red Arrows feature for the first time finishing 3rd and 4th respectively in Group B
In the semi finals, Kenya Breweries beat defending champions Nakivubo Villa 1-0 with a memorable George Opondo goal while Sudan witnessed both their teams clashing in the second semi final.
Al Hilal drew 0-0 with Al Mereikh in regulation time with Al Mereikh winning the resultant penalty shootout 5-4 to book a final date with Kenya Breweries.
1989: Nairobi-Kenya breweries win second title in a row in home soil
Kenya Breweries became the fourth Kenyan team to win back to back tournament after Luo Union,Gor Mahia and Abaluhyia FC did the same in the earlier years.
The red hot Breweries beat Tanzanian side Coastal Union 3-0 in the final with Paul Onyera scoring a brace in the 52nd and 89th minutes while Henry Motego scoring the other in the 82nd minute.
Breweries had sent Nakivubo Villa packing by beating them 2-0 while Tanzanian Club Coastal Union edged AFC Leopards 5-4 on penalties after a 1-1 draw.
Breweries topped Group A with 4 points ahead of Coastal Union who had 3points while AFC leopards topped Group B with 7 points ahead of Nakivubo Villa who had 5 points,a point ahead of third placed Al Hilal.
1990-Tournament not held
Part two in our next feature will summarize the milestone development from 1991 -2000.
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