Incentives are a very important ingredient for success in any sports activities worldwide as it gives the players more motivation to excel.
An its seems this is exactly what Kenya Ports Authority Managing Director Daniel Manduku has cultivated in Bandari Football Club that are now clear favourites to win this year’s SportPesa Premier League if their current form is anything to go by.
Bandari beat Nzoia Sugar by a solitary goal last Saturday, further stretching their lead atop the SportPesa Premier table, increasing their tally to 31 points.
Their 1-0 victory over Kariobangi Sharks a week ago had propelled them to the top of the league standing with 28 points from 13 matches thanks to Zoo Kericho and Western Stima who held Mathare and Gor Mahia to a stalemate.
And the KPA managing director Daniel Manduku, who is also the team patron, responded when the team took the league leadership, hosting them to a sumptuous lunch at the prestigious Pride Inn Hotel in Mombasa North Coast last Thursday promising the squad a trip to Europe should they clinch the league title.
This was the third team luncheon for Bandari since the season started.
When hosting Bandari FC for lunch at the KPA Mbaraki Sports Club last year in appreciation of their brilliant second place finish in last year’s SportPesa Premier League, Manduku promised to fully take up the team as his project and challenged them to win for him and KPA its first ever football Premiership title.
Himself a football enthusiast having been the architect of the Fifa Goal Project in Rwanda and other Fifa football projects, Manduku seems to be spot on with his management of Bandari who have greatly improved since he personally took over the reins at KPA.
“My emphasis even during my brief stint with Fifa was on the youth and motivation to the players which if properly looked at can transform a team to world beaters”, Manduku told the players during the luncheon.
He reminded them of how a French youth team had taken 10 years to win the 1998 World Cup. Apart from individually giving cash awards to the team for the second place finish, Manduku took the team to a four days’ pre-season tour of Zanzibar by air, a trip that motivated the players, a majority of whom were boarding a plane for the first time.
When the team got the invite to participate in the SportPesa Super Cup in Dar es Salaam Tanzania, Manduku took a personal initiative to accompany them to Tanzania and even gave them cash awards when they overcame Tanzanian giants Simba in the semi-finals.
The players were well taken care of in terms of remunerations, travel in comfort with the Mash Poa bus service which ferried them between venues.
They were also put up in at least four star hotels.
This combined have given the players the much needed energy and zeal to perform and the outcome is out there for all to see.