After seven years of continued struggles and failed attempts, Weatherhead Hockey Club finally clinched the National Hockey League title.
The curtains were brought down over the weekend, with Weatherhead brilliantly ending what has been an exceptional season with a 16-0 annihilation of bottom side Rockets.
It was victory that mattered less though as the yellow boys were confirmed champions last week after the Uganda Hockey Association [UHA] ruled in favor of the side, docking Kampala Hockey Club Stallions three points and five goals for using an ineligible player in their 1-0 win over the now champions in the third round.
Success did not come on a silver platter. Vincent Kasasa and his boys had to take on Wananchi’s monopoly, defeated it and coupled to that had to beat the undeniable stiff competition from KHC.
“It was a tight league, but thanks to the Almighty God, we emerged champions,” an elated Kasasa who has had to serve as a player and coach for four years now said.
“I have always mentioned to my players that ‘winners focus on winning and losers focus on winners’. They listened, played beautiful hockey that we have trained and finally we are crowned champions.”
Weatherhead collected 39 points out of the possible 48 to win their first league title since 2011. The side lost just once, and scored a record 94 goals, with Kasasa netting 28 of those that handed him the top scorer’s gong.
“I feel extremely happy and so grateful to God for this victory. I thank my players, club managers and the entire Weatherhead family for believing in me. They gave me a chance to coach, believed in me, and I have finally delivered.
“I also feel so good to have been the top scorer of the league with 28 goals.”
For their rivalry and the first round defeat they inflicted on Wananchi, Kasasa extended his appreciation to KHC saying: “Perhaps we wouldn’t have made it had they not beaten Wananchi.”
The 26-year-old further lauded both his club and the Stallions for upstaging Wananchi who had dominated the league for close to a decade. Not only has it been seven years since someone else won the trophy, Wananchi had their success come nearly unchallenged.
“I think we [Weatherhead and KHC] did a commendable job. Both clubs put up a great fight this year that ended Wananchi’s dominance.”
The Stallions finished third with 34 points, one point behind Wananchi who came second.