Mukidza strikes thrice against Senegal

By sportsnewsarena correspondent
Jul 15, 2017
  • Joshua Chasanga scored one of the tries for Kenya against Senegal. (Photo Courtesy KRU)

  • Wilson K'Opondo the Kenya captain leads by example in one of the many forays in the opponent's half. (Photo Courtesy KRU)

Kenya remained unbeaten in the Rugby Africa Gold Cup following a 45-25 win over Senegal at the Rugby Football Union of East Africa ground on Saturday.

Steve Sargos drilled over an early penalty for the visitors and Kenya responded with a try from their first foray in Senegal’s half.

Darwin Mukidza scored a try before doubling his tally and converting for a 12-3 lead.

It was Senegal’s turn when Mathieu Boscaro’s hard running created a platform for Sargos to touch down. Boscaro’s conversion narrowed the score to 12-10.

The hosts were forced into an early substitution when Dennis Muhanji replaced the injured Jacob Ojee. Joshua Chisanga was next over the Senegal chalk line after breaking free from the line out to touch down for a 17-10 lead.

There was a lull after the score but Muhanji got his name on the score sheet and Mukidza added the extras for a 24-10 lead at halftime.

On resumption, Jerome Paarwater, the Kenya head coach made two substitutions in the front row bringing in Curtis Lilako and Philip Ikambili for Dennis Karani and Peter Karia.

After seeing little possession at the start of the second half, it was a thing of sheer beauty as Kenya the finally stretched the Senegalese with their phase play, Muhanji combining well with Tony Onyango and Leo Seje to eventually set up David Ambunya for the five pointer, Mukidza converting to put the Simbas 31-10 up.

Kenyan infringement

Martin Owila then replaced Davis Chenge, slotting into the number eight slot with Joshua Chisanga moving to flank. From a Kenyan infringement, Sargos drilled home a penalty to cut the deficit to 31 -13.

Kenya could have gone for the kill but lacked the finishing power losing two try scoring opportunities in quick succession. But the pressure told on Senegal when Ikambili scored a try which Mukidza converted for a 38-13 lead.

The visitors responded with a try by Georges Mendy after Boscaro’s hard work. Sargos converted to narrow the gap 38-20. They sparkled and grew in confidence but were unable to penetrate Kenya’s defense.

When Kenya retained possession from the line out, Kenny Andola’s quick delivery to Leo Seje created an opportunity for Mukidza to land his hat trick, Andola converting for a 45-20 score.

Mendy soon got his double for Senegal, outpacing Tony Onyango to score down the left wing, a twenty point margin separating the two sides at the final whistle.

In Kampala, Uganda, Philip Wokorach was named the man of the match when the hosts beat Tunisia 78-17. They led 43-0 at halftime. Namibia rallied to beat Zimbabwe 31-26.


Additional reporting by The Punter


June 24: Kenya 33 Uganda 33, Senegal 16 Zimbabwe 28.

July 1: Senegal 16 Uganda 17, Tunisia 7 Namibia 53.

July 8: Kenya 100 Tunisia 10, Namibia 95 Senegal 0.

July 15: Kenya 45 Senegal 20, Uganda 78 Tunisia 17, Namibia 31 Zimbabwe 26.

July 22: Uganda v Namibia (Kampala), Zimbabwe v Kenya (Bulawayo).

July 29: Zimbabwe v Tunisia (Harare), Namibia v Kenya (Windhoek).

August 5: Uganda v Zimbabwe (Kampala), Tunisia v Senegal (Monastir).