Sammy Sholei: Kitale’s ever dazzling soccer gem

Sammy commenced his early soccer life in Kitale where he grew & learned. He played for Raymond F.C before leaving for Eldoretwhere he made a name for himself on the pitch.

Sammy commenced his early soccer life in Kitale where he grew & learned. He played for Raymond F.C before leaving for Eldoretwhere he made a name for himself on the pitch.

D.OB May 18 1967:

Sammy began his early soccer life in Kitale where he grew up and schooled.

Kenyan Premier League Flair
Sammy exploits and outstanding performance while at Raymonds made Eldoret-based Rivatex F.C to sign him. He won the Moi Golden Cup in 1991 and his  outstanding performance while at Rivatex made league giants Kenya Breweries now known as Tusker F.C rush for signature.He joined the Ruaraka-based Kenya Breweries at Breweries where  he would go on to win the league title twice as well as the Hedex Super Cup East Africa twice.

Photo: Kenya Breweries (Tusker) FC Golden generation. Sammy Sholei,( front row, second from right)

He was part of Kenya Breweries golden generation that nearly won Africa Winners Cup 1994 were it not for surrendering their two goals away advantage to Zaire’s (DRC) Motema Pembe. In the first leg, KBL drew 2 – 2 with Motema Pembe with Nachok and Henry Motego scoring for the Kenyans, Motema Pembe Zaire got their scored through Monko and Buawi. In the return leg match which was played in Nairobi many soccer lovers expected Kenya Breweries to pull a draw or a win to lift the continental accolades. A nervous Kenya Breweries lost the match 3 – 0 losing  by 5-2 aggregate.

National Team
Sammy received numerous caps to the national team notably under Mohammed Kheri and Yugoslavian Gardasevic Vojoslav. He made a mark against Algeria during the pre-World Cup 1998 qualifiers as Stars beat Algeria 3 – 1 at Kasarani with  Breweries trio of Henry Motego, Vincent Kwarula and Musa Otieno scoring. Sholei was introduced in 62nd minute of the match to replace Tony Lwanga. In Algiers, Sholei started  the match after giving a good account of himself in Nairobi though he was substituted in the 62nd minute of the match for Tom Ochurua. Stars lost 1 – 0 but progressed to the next stage of the qualifiers, having won 3 – 2 on aggregate. Sammy retired from soccer in 1997 as KBL started restructured and retrenched most staff with majority of footballers falling victim.

Soccer Management
Sammy Sholei was once elected vice chairman of FKF in 2010. He had  formed an alliance to oust the incumbent Sam Nyamwea from leadership with Hussein Mohammed as the chairman. Nyamweya trounced Mohammed but Sholei was elected.  During his time as the FKF National Vice Chairman Sammy Sholei complained of unprofessional management of soccer issues? at the Federation which caused disagreements with Sam Nyamwea. Sammy was later to be suspended from soccer activities by an emergency National executive council meeting held by FKF. His position was taken by Robert Asembo.

Sammy Sholei  ventured into business after soccer and founded E- world Communications which mainly deals with Information &Technology consultancy.

Photo: 1990 Rivatex FC side after winning Moi Golden Cup . Sammy Sholei (squatting, second from right)

Honours
Moi Golden Cup – 1991 Rivatex F.C.
Kenya Premier League – 1994, 1996 Kenya Breweries FC (renamed Tusker FC)
Hedex Super Cup East Africa – 1994, 1995 Kenya Breweries.
African Winners Cup runners up – 1994  Kenya Breweries

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