Nakuru gunning for a rare double

By the punter
Mar 27, 2021
  • Top Fry Nakuru RFC beat Homeboyz in the Enterprise Cup quarter finals to book a date with Nondies in the semi-final. (Photo by Shutterspeed)

  • Dominique Habimana, the Top Fry Nakuru RFC coach keen to bag a rare double by winning the Enterprise and Kenya Cups. (Photo by Shutterspeed)

Nakuru RFC are gunning for a rare double after reaching the final of the knock-out Enterprise Cup.

Dominique Habimana, the Nakuru RFC coach warmed up for a date with either Impala or Kenya Commercial Bank by beating Nondies 38-10 in the only semi-final last Saturday. Speaking about the win, Habimana noted Nakuru’s defence was solid.

“We did well in defense, effectively containing the line outs and mauls. When it came to time to take control of the game, the boys were able to speed up the game across the board,” the coach noted.

It is the depth at Nakuru RFC which has sustained the side which is popularly known as Wanyore. The side which played Nondies was a blend of youth and experience with a former Kenya Sevens vice captain Gibson Weru playing at scrum half.

When the teams met on January 1 in a Kenya Cup fixture, Nakuru emerged 19-8 winners and Habimana drew parallels. “Comparing it to the last time we met, we worked out the issues that prevented us from fully imposing our game plan, such as breakdown management, as well as some of the forward plays such as scrums and mauls.”

Gear up for a win

Already Nakuru RFC are planning for the next match. “We will improve on all these departments as well as gear up for a win and also build toward the Kenya Cup final stages,” Habimana said.

It does not matter who Nakuru RFC plays in the final. They will have a chance to watch their next opponents and plan accordingly. Also they will be well rested before the final.

Try scorers for Nakuru were Calvin Otieno who crossed the line twice, Edward Okemwa, Javan Murayi, Dalmus Chituyi and Kelvin Omiyo. Martin Muita kicked over three conversions and one penalty. At half time, Nakuru led 10-5. Joseph Akiruga replied with two tries for Nondies.

To reach the semi-final, Nakuru had a bye in the first round and beat Homeboyz 35-10. Nondies had edged out Mean Machine 23-18 with a last gasp try by Calvins Biko.

KCB and Impala will face off in the second semi final. Nick Abok, the Impala RFC assistant coach identified the main threat from the bankers’ forwards. “Traditionally, KCB will bring their big ball carriers in the forwards and we want to neutralize that from the onset. I think if we manage this aspect of their game, then we have a good chance of winning the semi-final.”

Narrow loss in East London

In the meantime, Tusker Simba XV narrowly lost 17-18 to Border Bulldogs in a Vodacom Cup match at Buffalo City Stadium in East London on Saturday. At halftime, the teams tied 7-7.

Fabian Olando opened the scores and Ken Andola converted for a 7-0 lead. Border replied with a try by Jeffrey Taljard which he converted to tie the scores.

Border vice-captain Jeffrey Taljard was the hero for the home team, scoring 13 of the 18 points, although he did miss three kicks at goal – a conversion and two penalties.

On resumption, Leonard Mugaisi scored the second try which Andola converted to restore the lead 14-7. Taljard who scored 13 points narrowed the gap with a penalty. Andola increased the lead 17-10 after stroking over a penalty.

It became a game of kickers as his opposite number Taljard also added a penalty. With the scores at 17-13 for the hosts, Makazole Mapimpi scored the decisive try.

Nakuru RFC line-up against Nondies:  15. Calvin Otieno, 14. John Kidera, 13. Edward Okemwa, 12. Kelvin Omiyo, 11. Javan Murayi, 10. Martin Muita, 9. Gibson Weru, 8. Dalmus Chituyi, 7. Mike Shioso, 6. Charles Onyango, 5. Philip Owuor, 4. Edwin Makori, 3. Isaiah Nyariki, 2. Sammy Warui, 1. Joseph Odero. Replacements: 16, Felix Oloo, 17. Darius Muturi, 18. Richmond Barasa, 19. Milla Mulama, 20. Cassius Omollo, 21. Victor Shigoli, 22. Steve Okumu, 23. Larry Safari.