Kenya Simbas exact revenge on Victoria Cup champions

Saturday September 21 2019

Kenya Simbas flanker Joshua Chisanga (right) vies for the ball with Zimbabwe's Kudakwashe Chiwanza during their Victoria Cup return match at Nakuru Athletics Club on September 22, 2019. PHOTO | JOHN NJOROGE |


Kenya Simbas put their best foot forward when they beat visiting Zimbabwe Sables 36-14 in a Victoria Cup match at Nakuru Athletics Club on Saturday.

Despite the loss, Zimbabwe were crowned champions of the four-nation tournament after their 41-5 victory over Zambia last weekend.

It was a sweet revenge for Kenya who lost 30-29 in the first leg of the match played at Hartsfield grounds in Bulawayo last month.

Playing before a partisan crowd , Kenya who were superior on ball handling and breakaways, started the match on a high and scored the opening try barely three minutes in.

And the destroyer-in-chief was Kenya Sevens centre Vincent Onyala who evaded his markers to bury home a brilliant try that was superbly converted by full back Anthony Odhiambo.

Zimbabwe should have reduced the arrears when they earned a penalty but scrumhalf  Hilton Mudariki's rising shot was unsuccessful.


On the other end, Kenya pushed forward and their efforts were rewarded when Anthony Odhiambo booted in a penalty after 19 minutes.

Kenya suffered a big blow when Monate Akuei was injured following an aerial collision with a team-mate and was replaced by Samuel Were.

As the match gathered momentum, Tshmala Biselele of Zimbabwe and Toby Francombe of Kenya were sin-binned for unbecoming behaviour.

Coach Paul Odera introduced Frank Mutuu and Brian Juma and rested Samuel Were and Emmanuel Mavala.

However, it was Zimbabwe who finally put their act together when Chibuwe Ngoni danced his way through Kenya's defence to score a try that was executed by Dudlee Whitte Sharpley.

Kenya regrouped as the match headed to the break and made a series of inroads into Zimbabwe's defence that culminated into a try by left wing Timothy Okwemba and Odhiambo converted.

On the stroke of half-time, Kenya made sure they were firmly on the driving seat when they scored a penalty through Francombe to lead 17-7 at interval.

Zimbabwe score their other try through Bornwell Gwinji with Sharpley converting. Kenya’s other try was scored by Anthony Omondi who made the conversion.

Charles Kuka and Samuel Were added the extras in the second half with Anthony Omondi missing one conversion and scoring the other.