Amonde: The focus is to reach London Sevens main cup quarters

By the punter
May 20, 2017

Andrew Amonde, the Kenya 7's captain has raised the bar and targets reaching the London Sevens main cup quarter final.

When asked by Sports News Arena of Kenya's realistic chances in the last tournament of the 2016/17 World Rugby Sevens Worls Series, Amonde did not hesitate to state the teams' focus.

Kenya has been drawn in a tough Pool A which is headed by 2016/17 Series winners South Africa, USA and Wales. "It is a tough pool but we have beaten all the teams in this Pool," Amonde stated.

It will be interesting to see the players who step on the field on Saturday after an injuries scare from Paris to Frank Wanyama, Brian tanga, Billy Odhiambo and Nelson Oyoo.

They trained on Wednesday and Cyprian Kuto was flown to London as a cover.

"Grounding ourselves and playing at our best, focusing on winning at least two games," Amonde explained will be key to achieving their goal. This begins with the first match against South Africa before Kenya play Wales and Russia.

The captain admitted that Kenya's performance in Paris could have been hampered by fatigue. "Most of the players were fatigued. They could not push more than where they had reached," he added.

Before the first ball is kicked at Twickenham, Amonde explained this was a rebuilding season for Kenya Sevens. "The young boys have gotten time to express themselves and the new technical bench has also learned. This will help the cause of the team going forward," he said.

What is not lost to Amonde is that some of the players could have been fasttracked to the deeper end of the pool instead of a gradual process. This was because most of the senior player who had been the backbone of the team left and the younger players had to step in.

In addition, some of the senior players sustained injuries and while Humphrey Kayange, a former captain went on an early retirement. Before leaving for Hong Kong and Singapore, William Ambaka and Dan Sikuta failed to travel further decimating the team.

But Amonde is full of praise for the players who stepped in. "They did well. Everybody has a learning moment each time."

Kenya are 12th after nine rounds and open the London Sevens campaign against South Africa.

London Sevens

Pool A: South Africa, USA, Wales, Kenya; Pool B: Scotland, France, Argentina, Russia; Pool C: New Zealand, Fiji, Canada, Japan; Pool D: England, Samoa, Australia, Spain.

Order of play, Saturday: Fiji v Canada, New Zealand v Japan, France v Argentina, Scotland v Russia, USA v Wales, South Africa v Kenya, Samoa v Australia, England v Spain, Fiji v Japan, New Zealand v Canada, France v Russia, Scot;land v Argentina, USA v Kenya, South Africa v Wales, Samoa v Spain, England v Australia, Canada v Japan, New Zealand v Fiji, Argentina v Russia, Scotland v France, Wales v Kenya, South Africa v USA, Australia v Spain, England v Samoa.