Mwamba beat KCB to keep playoffs dream alive

By francis marangu
Apr 02, 2021
  • Strathmore University Tony Owuor is tackled by Nakuru RFC's Geoffrey Ominde and Isaiah Nyariki. Strathmore won 15-10 in slippery conditions. (Photo by Shutterspeed)

The fight by Mwamba RFC to qualify for Kenya Cup playoffs flickers after beating Kenya Commercial Bank RFC 13-7 on Saturday.

Kulabu withstood tough playing conditions at the water-logged Madaraka ground to make the comeback win on a rainy afternoon.

Despite conceding an early try, Mwamba never gave up and went on to dominate KCB in all departments. Their presence at the ruck was outstanding with good breakdown contests and did not give the bankers an easy time at the set pieces.

Flanker Tito Oduk had a great game for Mwamba whose defense played a huge part in the win.

Oscar Simiyu touched down for KCB in the fifth minute and Darwin Mukidza converted for a 7-0 lead. The bankers had knitted good passes from a lineout possession after camping in Mwamba’s half.

Mwamba then began to dictate pace and played in KCB's half with frequent visits to their 22. Save for the glaring poor ball handling by both teams due to the slippery conditions, the match was entertaining.

Flyhalf Lavin Asego missed a penalty in the seventh minute but slotted the second in the 17th to narrow the gap 7-3 in KCB's favor. Oliver Mang’eni was then sent to the sin bin for KCB and Mukidza missed a penalty attempt at the half hour mark.

As the match approached halftime, lock Ken Handa made an intercept that led to a try converted by Asego with Mwamba leading 10-7 at halftime.

Asego kicked over a penalty six minutes after resumption that assured Mwamba of the all-important win.

The rest of the match was all about Mwamba's defensive character being tested by KCB who fought aggressively to get back but in vain. Jerry Griffin (Mwamba) and John Ahenda (KCB) were given yellow cards in second half by referee John Bosco Muamba.

Mwamba’s win did not make huge difference on log standings but gave them a lifeline to fight till the end.

Kabras upset Impala

Fellow playoffs contenders Kabras Sugar, Homeboyz RFC and Strathmore University all had wins in their respective matches. The standout result was Kabras beating league leaders Impala RFC 25-13 after leading 7-3 at halftime.

George Okowa had given Impala a fourth minute 3-0 lead from the penalty but Jone Kubu touched down for Kabras in the 39th minute with Fabian Olando converting.

Impala went 8-7 up two minutes after resumption with Nato Simiyu touching down. But, Kabras regained the lead at 12-8 five minutes later with captain Maxwell Adaka scoring from a rolling maul.

Aluda Beda made it 17-8 in the 52nd minute with the third try and he completed his brace in the 65th minute handing Kabras the bonus point. Jospher Ochieng kicked a penalty for the sugar millers and Davis Makori scored a try for Impala as Kabras avenged the first leg loss.

Strathmore beat Nakuru RFC 15-10 at home. Kanyiri Kariuki kicked over a penalty for Strathmore and Geoffrey Ominde kicked for Nakuru as they tied 3-3 after 17 minutes.

Center Patrick Ruhiu finished off possession from a lineout to give Strathmore a 8-3 lead in the 23rd minute and Ominde missed a second penalty attempt in the 26th minute. In the 40th minute, Churchill Ooko kicked the ball and chased to touch down at the left corner with a conversion from Kariuki. Strathmore enjoyed a 15-3 halftime lead.

In the second half, Lawrence Buyachi came off the bench to score a try for Nakuru in the 70th minute  converted by Ominde which settled the match.

Brian Mwangi missed a penalty attempt for Strathmore in the last minutes.

Other matches saw Kenya Harlequin FC beat Bungoma Sharks 91-6, Homeboyz RFC won 39-0 over Mean Machine while Nondescript RUFC and Blak Blad settled for a 7-7 score. Western Bulls beat Thika RFC 48-0.

Results: KCB 7 Mwamba 13, Strathmore 15 Nakuru RFC 10, Homeboyz RFC 39 Mean Machine 0, Nondescripts 7 Blak Blad 7, Western Bulls 48 Thika RFC 0, Kabras Sugar 25 Impala RFC 13, Kenya Harlequin 91 Bungoma Sharks 6.