Menengai Oilers shift focus to Kenya Cup

By Clement Wekulo: Monday, October 14th 2019 at 00:00 GMT +3 | Rugby
Bob Muhati of Menengai Cream Homeboyz in action against Menengai Oilers during the Prinsloo Sevens at Nakuru Athletics Club in August. [Kipsang Joseph, Standard]

Following Saturday night’s 23-14 loss to KCB in the Impala Floodlit final, Menengai Oilers have now set sights on the 2019-20 Kenya Cup season which starts next weekend. 

Oilers, who were making their maiden appearance in the Floodlit final, held their own against the eight-time champions for the better part of the match but their resistance was undone by a lackluster display in the second half. 

Having taken a 3-0 lead through Austin Sikutwa’s early penalty, Oilers conceded a try by Michael Kimwele on the stroke of halftime before the bankers came firing on all cylinders in the second half to stamp their authority in a match which was temporarily halted due to Floodlights failure.

“There were a lot of positive lessons. We played extremely well and I am pleased with the boys. We didn’t manage the game very well especially with the wet conditions and that was our main undoing,” said Oilers coach Gibson Weru.

“We matched them (KCB)in every aspect and I am generally happy with how we played.”

For a club that was established in 2015, Weru’s charges definitely punched above their weight over the three weekends at the Floodlit event and they will be hoping to carry the momentum to the Kenya Cup league having finished eighth when they made their top-flight debut during the 2018-19 campaign.

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“We were trying out different players and now we know which players will be in the starting team when the Kenya Cup starts. By all means, we will be in the Kenya Cup playoffs and its just a matter of time which of the top six positions we will occupy,” said Weru.

Oilers will start their quest for a playoffs slot in the Kenya Cup with an away match against cross-town neighbours Nakuru RFC.

Meanwhile, Homeboyz RFC bagged bronze at the Floodlit tournament courtesy of a 30-5 win over Kenya Harlequin while hosts Impala Saracens edged Nondescripts 17-15 to claim Plate in an encounter that was marred by allegations of poor officiating.

Strathmore Leos dethroned Mean Machine in the universities’ category after beating the University of Nairobi team 26-16 in the title decider. 

Ofafa Jericho retained the schools’ title following a 21-0 win over Muhuri Muchiri Secondary while the BlackLions franchise defeated Black Panthers 40-5 in the ladies’ category.

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