How Taabu lifted Mwamba to Driftwood rugby Sevens glory

Mwamba RFC players celebrate after beating Menengai Oileo 17-7 in the National Sevens Circuit, Driftwood Sevens, in Mombasa, over the weekend. [Omondi Onyango, Standard]

Kenyan international Daniel Taabu was voted the Most Valuable Player (MVP) after helping his club Mwamba win the third leg of the 2022 National Sevens Circuit, Driftwood Sevens in Mombasa, on Sunday.

The Olympian played a vital role in Mwamba’s 21-7 comeback win over Menengai Oilers in the final played at the Mombasa Sports Club.

Mark Kwemoi crossed over and converted the first try of the game to give Oilers a 7-0 lead before Michael Okello powered his way under the centre post to tie the scores at 7-7 after a Taabu successful conversion.

Taabu proceeded to give Mwamba the lead before Crispine Omondi sealed the win.

It was Mwamba's first victory of the National Sevens Circuit and the first time they advanced past the quarter final stage.

Mwamba beat Homeboyz 10-5 in the semifinals while Oilers saw off defending champions KCB 19-0 to qualify for the title match.

On Saturday, Mwamba won all their Group D matches after edging off Western Bulls (7-0), Zetech Oaks (17-5) and Nondescripts (14-0). In the quarterfinals, they thrashed Kenya Harlequin 19-0.

Speaking after the win, Mwamba head coach Peter Kephar said hard work, patience, determination, belief and game management helped them to the championship trophy.

“Truth be told, we were not fit enough for Driftwood, but what pushed us through was that we did very well in management of our matches tackling each game at a time,” said Kephar.

“The boys believed in themselves and pushed their limits and I am proud we shocked many. It was all team work."

Taabu joined Strathmore Leos' Branson Madigu and KCB’s Jacob Ojee in the list of MVP award winners. Madigu won the Christie Sevens award while Ojee took home the Kabeberi Sevens accolade.

Taabu was also named in the Driftwood Sevens team of the tournament alongside teammates Mike Okello and Ronney Omondi.

Others in the team are Patrick Odongo from Daystar Falcons and Oilers trio of Amos Onyinkwa, Steve Arunga and Austin Sikutwa.

In the third place final, KCB defeated Homeboyz 21-14 as they walked home with the bronze medal.

Nike Kimwele, Eugene Omondi and Bob Muhati scored a try each for the bankers, who won the Kabeberi Sevens before losing to Strathmore Leos at Christie Sevens final. 

Kenya Harlequins stunned Christie Sevens champions Strathmore Leos 7-5 to finish fifth.

Mwamba earned 22 points to stay fourth on 48 points. Oilers are joint third with Strathmore Leos on 53 points, while KCB lead the series on 58 points.

The series moves to Dala Sevens in Kisumu this coming weekend.