Shujaa lose to Australia in Dubai 7s II opener

RUGBY |
Kenya Sevens's Billy Odhiambo in action against Uganda at Dubai 7s. [Courtesy-Dubai 7s]

Kenya Sevens on Friday kicked off the second leg of the Dubai Sevens Series on a low note after losing 21-14 to Australia in the opening match of the Group B matches played at The Sevens Stadium in the UAE.

Shujaa headed into the match seeking to improve on their last weekend’s performance but once again failed to impress after going down to the Australian’s three converted tries scored by Corey Toole (two) and Henry Hutchison.

In the match, Kenya started on the back foot after finding themselves trailing 7-0 inside the opening two minutes when Hutchison crossed over the whitewash for the Aussies before Dietrich Roache converted for an early lead.

World Rugby fans favorite Alvin “Buffa” Otieno restored parity after crossing over for Kenya’s first try that Tony Omondi converted to level the scores at 7-7.

Moments later, Toole came off the bench to hand the advantage back to Australia after he beat Shujaa’s defense line to cross over as Roache added the extras for a 14-7 halftime lead.

In the final half, Toole returned to the score sheet to extend the Aussies lead to 21-7.

Johnstone Olindi trimmed the gap with a try that he converted for a 21-14 scoreline. The Aussie held on to win the match.

Elsewhere, USA mauled neighbours Canada 31-14 in another Group B match with tries from Kevon Williams, Stephen Tomasin and Lucas Lacamp (two each).

Kenya, who completed the 2021 Series in third place behind winners South Africa and runners-up Great Britain, will meet USA (1.20pm) and Canada (4.46pm) in their remaining matches in their group.

Fiji also started their campaign with a 22-17 loss to France as Argentina hammered Spain 21-14 in Pool “C” matches.  

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