By Hilary Mukasa
Esse Akida’s star continues to shine brighter.
The history of Esse Akida cannot be complete without the mention of Meru County. While in Meru her incredible story of football excelled. In 2018 the sensational striker graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Business Administration from Kenya Methodist University. At the same time, she joined Israeli top team Ramat Hasharon where her performance was marvelous enough to look for greener pastures in Europe. Recently Esse Akida reached the pinnacle of her football career when she ultimately and fittingly joined the decorated Turkish club Besiktas.
In 2015 the first-ever Inter-County Championship that was held in Laikipia County in Nanyuki, a total of 25 Counties participated in the event which featured soccer and volleyball for both men and women.
The unique point in this Championship was that it was an open tournament and Counties paraded their cream de la cream. Meru County cemented its name into the history books by being the first team to win the Championship in arguably the most competitive Inter-County football competition to be staged.
The queens from Meru were awarded the winner’s trophy and cash prize. In that tournament, there could only be one player who would win the golden boot and it was none other than Esse Akida. She scored a total of 9 goals that spearheaded Meru County to win the coveted award. The team from Meru had been selected meticulously from all the wards and was bristling with talent.
Apart from Esse Akida, the whole team comprised super talents each with their strengths. Inspired by her, Meru County beat Nyeri 7-0 and Makueni 7-0 in the preliminaries. Akida the ever team player scored an astonishing 5 goals in the match against Nyeri. Meru County beat giants Kakamega who hail from the home of football 3-0 in the quarter-finals. Against Kakamega, Akida scored a sublime goal that underlined her scoring prowess. In the semifinals, Meru beat Kajiado 2-0 in a tough semifinal match. A bulk of the players from Kajiado County was from Olympics high school a soccer powerhouse in Kenya. The mother of all battles was a classic final between Meru and the hosts Laikipia. Laikipia had an array of talents from the Harambee Starlets team led by Neddy Atieno, a supreme goal scorer with lightning speed seconds quicker than opposing defenders. Meru County won the final match 5-4 after an epic penalty shootout.
Meru county team had won the Championship in style. They scored a total of 19 goals in regular time and conceded no single goal. Only that team could have won that way. Whenever Esse Akida and KeMU Queens graced the football fields in Meru jubilant fans watched with joy as the team perfectly caught the essence of the beautiful game with the amazing football skills which they displayed with swagger. They made everything look so easy.
Esse Akida was a complete player who will be forever remembered by Meru fans. Being an extremely talented player and academician makes her more than just a footballer, more than just a soccer player.