The 2016 Kenya Cup champions Kabras Sugar registered the biggest win over the weekend as the 2018-19 season kicked off.
The sugar millers, who are coached by South African Henly Du Plessis, handed newly promoted Mean Machine a rude welcome, thumping them 41-0 at their Kakamega backyard.
In what was Du Plessis’ first competitive assignment, hosts Kabras took a commanding 17-0 lead at halftime before sealing maximum points in the second half through three converted tries.
In Nairobi, Nondescript staged a spectacular comeback to stun Homeboyz 20-14 as defending champions Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) eased past debutants Menengai Oilers with a 27-5 win.
“We started off poorly and our decision making was wanting in crucial stages of the match. KCB is a very clinical side and they will always punish you when you commit such mistakes,” Oilers coach Gibson Weru told The Standard Sports.
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“Inexperience played a big role in the loss. My halfback combination did not tick at all and perhaps we could have troubled KCB more had the combination worked,” Weru said.
Former champions Nakuru RFC started their campaign with a hard-fought 20-15 win away to Strathmore Leos as Impala Saracens survived Blak Blad’s scare, holding on for a 18-15 triumph.
Sunday’s only fixture saw Kenya Harlequins edge Mwamba 29-26 in a nail-biting affair at the RFUEA grounds.
Having enjoyed a comfortable 24-5 cushion at the interval, Quins looked like they had wrapped up a comfortable win when Ugandan international Solomon Okia scored an unconverted try on resumption to stretch their lead.
Mwamba would, however, not go down without a fight as they clawed themselves to withing touching distance, scoring three converted tries through Michael Agevi (2) and Pharell Mtani.
This set up a nervy ending to the match but Quins held on to earn the win.
“Sometimes when you get such a comfortable lead you become a bit complacent and the boys might just have taken their feet off the pedal. Some of the second half substitutes did not live up to the tempo and we suddenly started playing like Mwamba,” Quins coach Charles Cardovillis said.
His Mwamba counterpart Kevin Wambua said his charges were awful in the first half and vowed to put a good show when they face Homeboyz in their next match.
“It was a game of two halves. We played very poorly in the first half and after the halftime talk, the boys showed some improvement. We were just unlucky not to get the win but we hope to build from the losing bonus point ahead of the next match,” Wambua said.