Poor show for Shujaa as they miss quarters slot

By Clement Wekulo: Saturday, December 7th 2019 at 05:35 GMT +3 | Rugby
Alvin Otieno of Morans avoids a tackle from Cecil Sebastian of South Africa during their Tusker Safari Sevens 2019 tournament match against Samurai at RFUEA Grounds on October 20, 2019. Morans 19-14. Photo/Stafford Ondego

Having valiantly gone down 17-12 to South Africa in their opener on Thursday, Shujaa faced England yesterday in a match which sealed Kenyans fate as they lost 12-5 to see their hopes of reaching the last eight go up in smoke.

South Africa and England proceeded to the Main Cup quarter-finals from pool D by virtue of occupying the top two slots while Kenya and Spain were relegated to the Challenge Trophy.

Shujaa will now contend for the Challenge Trophy today alongside the likes of Scotland, Wales and Japan who also failed to finish in the top two in their respective pools.

In their match against the English, Shujaa were undone by poor execution and lack of composure in their opponent’s territory.

The result saw Kenya suffer the 21st defeat to the Europeans in the World Sevens Series since December 2011.

In the second match yesterday Kenya concluded their preliminaries with a 22-19 loss to Spain.

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Against the Spaniards, Shujaa scored three tries and two conversions while Spain managed four tries and a single conversion.

Daniel Taabu added the extras to Johnstone Olindi and Nelson Oyoo’s first half five-pointers which saw Shujaa lead 14-12 at half-time before Spain snatched the win with late unconverted tries that ensured Shujaa finished last in pool D.

At the same time, Kenya’s women’s Sevens team, the Lionesses, progressed to today’s quarter-finals of the Dubai women’s invitational event with a perfect record as they thumped Belgian side Belsevens 26-5 before securing top spot in their pool by edging out Arukas Queen Kumagaya of Japan 17-15.

Lionesses scored three tries and one conversion against the Japan side who managed three five-pointers.

Kenya’s tries were delivered by Celestine Masinde, Janet Okello (2) with Grace Adhiambo adding a conversion.

The Kenyans are using the tournament to prepare for next year’s Hong Kong Sevens-cum-World Women’s Sevens Series qualifier.

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