Resolution Impala Saracens and Nondescripts RFC have formed a new memorial award category in honour of the late Ogeto Gecheo.
It is named the Ogeto Gecheo Memorial Award and it will be awarded to the most young promising player between the two teams.
The panel to decide on the nominee for the award which will be issued alongside the Chums Cup that the sides play for,will consist of past players from both teams.
Match day four of the 2017 – 2018 Kenya Cup season is set to reignite one of the oldest rivalries in the country, as Nondescripts R.F.C. faces Resolution Impala Saracens in the last tie of the year before the Christmas break. Resolution Impala Saracens look to get back to winning ways after their first loss in match day three to Menengai Cream Homeboyz, while Nondescripts R.F.C is buoyed by an emphatic first win of the season against Mombasa RFC.
Rivalries and standings aside, (Resolution Impala Saracens are fifth with 10 points while Nondescripts R.F.C is in seventh place with five points) the two clubs share a rich history, albeit partly with a sad twist.
The two clubs have had the honour of sharing some of the most talented players in Kenya. None is more notable than the late Samson Odhiambo who played at open-side flanker between 1995 and 2002.
Nicknamed “Chum’ Reru” (chuma ya reli) or “Chums”, Odhiambo joined Impala at 18 years of age from Nairobi Milimani High School. He featured for the side for six years winning a host of accolades including the Impala Floodlit, Kenya Cup and Enterprise Cup triples in 2000 and 2001.
In the 2002 season, he turned out for Nondescripts R.F.C and helped the side break a 19-year Impala Floodlit tournament drought. He also won several man-of the match mentions. He featured in an Enterprise cup quarterfinals match against KCB in which he sustained a head injury and later succumbed to it.
Odhiambo passed on at the age of 25 dealing a blow to both clubs and country as a rising star who was bound to feature for the national team.
To date, his exploits on the field are fondly remembered by many players, some who were both unfortunate to be at the end of his bruising tackles, and others who shared in the glory of his ball-carrying ability.
In honour of him, the two teams play for the Samson Odhiambo Memorial Cup, also referred to as the “Chum Reru” or “Chums” Cup, in each match every year since his passing.
Separately, it has been just over a year since death robbed the two clubs of yet another promising player, Ogeto Gecheo, who also succumbed to an injury sustained playing the sport he loved against Strathmore Leos in a Kenya Cup Fixture.
OG as he was commonly known died on December 6, 2016 three days after the tie.
OG, the younger brother to current Nondescripts R.F.C chairman Auka Gecheo, was the captain of the Resolution Impala Saracens development side prior to joining Nondies.
He is remembered for his leadership, hard work and dedication to both teams.
It is in light of the foregoing, we announce the OG Memorial Award that will be played for, and awarded to the most promising young player on the day selected by a panel from both clubs. This will be done henceforth when the two teams play on any match day.
The trophy and award aim to keep the memory of the two young players alive. The tradition will further cement the ties between the clubs as a show of unity despite the adversities of life on and off the pitch. The fixture promises to be as electrifying nonetheless.
*Courtesy of Nondies Rugby