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Kenya's dwarf football team dreams of going pro, inspiring new sides

IANS  |  Nairobi 

Stars, Kenya's first men's dwarf team, is optimistic about its future, despite being forced to miss out on its chance to participate in a recent tournament in the

The team's eight players had set their hopes on attending the national games in from July 7-11, but financial constraints made it unfeasible, reports

"We face the challenge of ground, we face a challenge of balls, we face challenge of corns, we face challenge of uniform," volunteer said about some of the problems the team faced, adding that it only had one strip.

Due to a lack of sponsorship possibilities, the team has reached out to the and well-wishers for help.

But despite not being in a position to attend the competition in the US, the team is looking ahead to the Copa Argentina in October, where it hopes to be able to compete in friendly matches.

While the team plays on a recreational basis, it seeks to take on international sides and eventually turn professional. The players, aged between 18-47 years old, have faced able-bodied teams on occasion.

Dwarf has different rules to the mainstream version, in the interests of safety. Headers are banned, for instance, to prevent spinal injuries, and if a heads the ball, the other team will be awarded a free kick.

The only team of its kind in East Africa, the side is looking to inspire similar groups in Tanzania, and using a messaging group called "Little people of East Africa," the epa-source said.

Stars was established with the help of "Short Stature Society of Kenya," in a bid to tackle stigmatization by offering people a chance to get involved in activities such as motivational speaking, theater and community work, as well as like weight-lifting, and



(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sat, July 14 2018. 15:58 IST