The third annual Lion Guardian Games were held on the expansive plains of Oldoinyo-Wuas among the foothills of the Chyulu range. Lion Guardians were looking forward to this day with great anticipation and excitement and they were not disappointed. True to its nature, the games lived up to their usual competitive billing. Drawn from all corners of the 3500 square km Amboseli ecosystem, the Lion Guardians exhibited competitive spirit of a true traditional Maasai warrior. Of all the winners of the previous 2 editions of the games, only one Lion Guardian managed to defend his title while the rest were dethroned.
This year, a new event called receiver challenge was added specifically to test the skills of Lion Guardians in picking-up radio telemetry signals and in herding. Eselenkei Group Ranch grabbed 4 out of 6 awards on offer thus keeping the championship title they won last year!
Lion Guardian Kamunu Saitoti was clearly a class above the rest as he scooped wins in 2 events; stick throwing and receiver challenge, before finally grabbing the most coveted Greatest Project Impact award.
Kuyan Nterepia from Eselenkei won the competitive 100m dash to dethrone the previous winner Lopono who did not qualify for the final.
The newly wed Lenkai Nkiinti showed his seriousness this time around by taking the spear throwing distance award after beating a congested field.
Spear throwing accuracy was extremely competitive before Kisimir Olamayiani hit the target to give Mbirikani Group Ranch a consolation.
Olgulului Group Ranch successfully defended the football title after beating Eselenkei 2-0 before a capacity crowd of cheering fans. Striker Philip Briggs, who orchestrated their attacks, scored a goal and set-up another to silence his football rival Eric Ole Kesoi. Even though he was the target of many fouls, lanky Briggs had the last laugh as he led his team to the title. After the final whistle, Eselenkei vowed to train hard in order to bring regain the football title they won in the first edition of the games. Eco-Sys Action for the second year running sponsored the Lion Guardian games and provided balls with Lion Guardian logos and funds for the event. The games were also graced by Mr. Don Young, a prominent member of the Lion Guardian Program Board of Directors.