Kenya Sevens in search of redemption in Dubai

Samura's Bruce Kurt-Lee stops Francis Humwa (left) of Kenya Shujaa during Safari 7s at RFUEA Grounds. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]
After seeing his charges relinquish the Safari Sevens crown to Samurai Select at the RFUEA grounds over the weekend, Kenya Sevens head coach Paul Murunga said the setback gives them an opportunity to improve on their weak areas.

Murunga, who was speaking after their 21-14 loss in the final also expressed satisfaction with the team's depth after the second string national team, Morans won the Safari Sevens Bronze medal.

"Perhaps we would not have much to train for had we won the Safari Sevens. The loss provides us with an opportunity to work harder and polish on our weak areas. All we need to do is manage the team in terms of defence and attack," Murunga said.

With the Safari Sevens having been Murunga's first assignment since taking over the reins from Innocent Simiyu last month, Shujaa and Morans both topped their respective pools after day one before storming to the last four with wins over Red Wailers and Namibia respectively.

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Morans would, however, bow out in the semi finals, eventually settling for third position while a Kurt Lee Arendse try fell Shujaa at the last hurdle.

"The Morans managed to finish third which is a big achievement; that shows that we have enough depth in the squad and I think we are ready to take on the World. Now we have a chance to fix the team for the next two weeks before heading to the Dubai tournament," Murunga said.

The loss in the Safari Sevens final was Shujaa's second in as many months having lost 17-5 to Zimbabwe in the Africa Sevens final in Tunisia in October.

The team will be seeking redemption as the 2018-19 HSBC World Sevens Series kicks off with the Dubai Sevens on November 30.

In Dubai, Shujaa, who won the 2016 Singapore Sevens are in pool B alongside 2017-18 Series runner-up Fiji, Scotland and France and Murunga is keen on aiding the side to the quarter finals.

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"Our target is to reach the quarter finals. I can't really tell Fiji's strength right now since I have not faced them yet as head coach. I know with time we shall build a team that can compete favourably at that level," Murunga added.

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Kenya SevensHSBC World Sevens SeriesIRB Series