Rugby: Kenya drops in global rankings after Canada thrashing

By Clement Wekulo: Wednesday, November 14th 2018 at 00:05 GMT +3 | Rugby
Kenya's Oliver Mang'eni is tacled by Fortunate Chipendo of Zimbabwe during Africa Gold Cup at RFUEA Stadium Grounds on Saturday, June 30, 2018. [Jonah Onyango, Standard]

Starved Simbas now hunt down Hong Kong

Ian Snook’s men face Hong Kong on Saturday, seeking to bring their 2019 World Cup chase back on track.

Having fallen to a crushing 65-19 defeat at the hands of Canada in their Repechage opener, national 15s team, Simbas will be out to bring their 2019 World Cup chase back on track when they confront Hong Kong on Saturday.

Kenya are last in the four-team Repechage standings while their Sunday tormentors Canada lead with five points after earning a bonus point for beating the Simbas with more than four tries.

While conceding 10 tries and scoring three in their opening match might not be the kind of result they had hoped for, Simbas captain Davis Chenge said the Canadians were superior.

“Canada are a good side; they really brought the physicality to us. We tried to match them but they were the better side,” Chenge told the World Rugby website.

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Despite the heavy loss, Chenge, praised his teammates’ resilience in the match which they trailed 27-12 at halftime.

“The boys performed really well. They showed really good character and never gave up,” the Kenya Commercial Bank loose forward said.

Ahead of their clash with Hong Kong, Chenge said they will put in hard work with an intention of recording a win.

“We are going back to the drawing board, work harder and hopefully, win in the next game,” Chenge said.

In Hong Kong, Kenya Simbas face a team that is reeling from a 26-9 shock defeat to Germany- a side that was ranked eight places below them prior to their meeting.

The Repechage in  France has for the first time adopted a round-robin format.

Kenya qualified for the tournament by finishing second in the 2018 Africa Gold Cup, which acted as African qualifiers to the 2019 World Cup.

The Repechage winner will book a spot at next year’s global showpiece in Japan. They will join world champions New Zealand, South Africa,Italy and African champions Namibia in group B.

Meanwhile, Simbas have dropped from 28 to 29 in the World Rugby rankings.

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