Kabeberi 7s: Ocholla backs youthful Nakuru to shine

Friday July 26 2019

Nakuru head coach Mitch Ocholla (in a track suit) talks to his players after a workout at Nakuru Athletics Club on July 23, 2019 ahead of Kabeberi Sevens at Kinoru Stadium in Meru. PHOTO | FRANCIS MUREITHI |


Nakuru RFC coach Mitch Ocholla has sounded a warning shot to teams ahead of the second leg of National Sevens Rugby Circuit at Kinoru Stadium in Meru on Saturday.

Wanyore, as the populous Nakuru side is fondly known by their zealous fans, lost 20-0 to Homeboyz in the semi-finals of the inaugural Kakamega Sevens.

“Nobody should underrate us. I had nine rookies who gave a good account of themselves. Our top players such as Geoffrey Ominde, Philip Kwame and other veterans like Oscar Ouma were not there yet they managed to reach the semis,” he said.

The side missed the services of national team player Munata Akuei who was down with malaria.

Also missing in the squad was John Okot who was with Kenya Under-20 team in Brazil, Nelson Oyoo and Donald Oluoch.

“For me this is an indicator that our club has developed a good development system for the boys. We are building the team of the future,” added Ocholla.


He said the game became more tactical in Kakamega after playing the first four games and this was the undoing of the young players as they had never featured before in the sevens circuit.

“Teams like Mwamba and Homeboyz cruised past my boys purely on experience. However, my joy is that not a single player picked any injury and that promises a good fight in the Kabeberi Sevens,” said Ocholla.

He singled out former Kisii RFC players Amos Obae and Rodgers Gworo and former St Peter’s Mumis Secondary School player Nelson Makhoha for putting up a spirited fight in Kakamega.

“We also had school boys like Edwin Inonda, and Duncan Abuyeka from Western Bulls who were among the new signings and gelled well with the team’s playing pattern,” added the former Strathmore Leos head coach.

However, he said he will use tactical skills to go past their experienced and battled hardened opponents to stamp their authority in the circuit.

“We didn’t do well on kick offs and that made us lost the battle because after that we switched off and this enabled Mwamba and Homeboyz to score quick tries against us,” added Ocholla.

He said he was also working on the team’s attacking pattern which was their other undoing in Kakamega.

“Our defence also was not at its best as it did not have patience and these are some of the weak links in the team I have polished and devised a whole new tactic and the team is now ready to conquer their opponents and reach the finals,” said Ocholla.

He added: “The beauty of the whole postmortem of the Kakamega championship is that the boys have rejuvenated confidence and I have made them realise they have potential to face their opponents.”