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Impala out to tame Kabras in Kakamega

Friday November 8 2019

Kabras Sugar fullback Jones Kubu (left) avoids a tackle from Mwamba forward Venanzio Ng'ang'a during their Kenya Cup rugby league match at Railway Club, Nairobi on November 2, 2019. Kabras won 43-06. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |

Kabras Sugar fullback Jones Kubu (left) avoids a tackle from Mwamba forward Venanzio Ng'ang'a during their Kenya Cup rugby league match at Railway Club, Nairobi on November 2, 2019. Kabras won 43-06. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

AYUMBA AYODI
By AYUMBA AYODI
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Leaders Kabras Sugar will get the first real test of the season when they host Impala Saracens in a top-of-the-table Kenya Cup League clash at Kakamega Showground on Saturday.

The two sides that met in the Kenya Cup final of the 2015/16 season, won their first two matches but it's Kabras Sugar who lead on goal difference with the Sarries falling second.

Defending champions Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) also hope to uphold their unbeaten run when they host Nakuru at The Den in Ruaraka as Menengai Oilers seek to maintain winning ways against Homeboyz at Jamhuri Park Showground.

Kabras, Impala, KCB, Menegai Oilers and Homeboyz head into Day Three of the Kenya Cup League with unbeaten runs to protect. The rest have claimed bonus point-wins from their two previous outings save for the Deejays.

Kabras Sugar and Impala go into Kakamega battle, having met nine times in the last six seasons where the Sarries have only won once.

Impala are yet to beat Kabras Sugar since their 31-14 win in the first leg at Impala during the regular league outing of the 2015/16 season.

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However, Kabras would claim swift revenge 25-13 in Kakamega in the second leg before the two teams met in the Kenya Cup final again with Kabras clinching their maiden Cup title, winning 22-5 in the final.

The two sides met twice last season with Kabra winning home and away -- 41-10 and 32-22 respectively. Kabras Sugar would power to their fifth consecutive Cup final but lost to KCB 23-15 in Kakamega.

Kabras Sugar head coach Henley Du Plessis has kept faith in the squad that chalked a bonus point 43-9 win against Mwamba last Saturday including Fijians fullback Jones Kubu, centre Tomaci Sinate and South African fly-half Ntabeni Dikusa.

Skipper Max Adaka should lead Kabras’ battle of forwards alongside Ephraim Oduor, Asuman Mugerwa, Brian Juma and Hillary Odhiambo, George Nyambua, Charlton Mokua and veteran loose forward Lawrence Buyachi.

Felix Ayange is back on the bench replacing Kevin Keegan who is set to feature for the ESS sides, Nakarugua Abisai is set to make another appearance off the bench.

Impala coach Mitch Ocholla has made four changes replacing Duncan Ekasi and Davis Makori, who have work commitments with Paul Oimbo and Carl-Williams Odhiambo at forward.

Anthony Odhiambo is back from injury to replace Mark Kwemoi, who moves to the bench while Billy Omondi gets to start at centre ahead of Douglas Ochako, who moves to the bench.

“It’s a new season and new responsibility for me. Impala haven’t beaten Kabras in a long time but it’s the players who will decide. If they are hungry enough then they will take it,” said Ocholla.

FIXTURES (All matches at 4pm EAT)

KCB v Nakuru (Ruaraka)

Quins v Western Bulls (RFUEA)

Homeboyz v Menengai Oilers (Jamhuri Park)

Kabras Sugar v Impala Saracens (Kakamega)

Mwamba v Kisumu (Impala)

Blak Blad v Nondies (Kenyatta University).

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