Shamas sack four after attack on referee during KRU Championship playoffs

Noreen Liyosi, the first woman to become a World Rugby certified rugby referee in Nakuru officiate a Kenya Cup match between Menengai Oilers RFC and KCB RFC at KCB Grounds in Nairobi on February 12, 2022. [Stafford Ondego, Standard]

Kenya Rugby Union (KRU) Championship side Shamas Rugby Foundation on Tuesday terminated the contract of four staff members.

This is following an incident during their KRU Championship semi-final match against Catholic University Monks on Saturday at the RFUEA grounds where the match referee Said Kenya was assaulted by players.

The players whose contracts have been terminated include former internationals twin brothers James and Joseph Kangethe, who play at lock and eighth man respectively, flanker Julian Ouma and Stephen Ottuo.

Shamas founder Azim Deen said in a statement posted on the clubs official social media pages that the decision to terminate the services of the four was after deliberation by the management following the unfortunate events of Saturday.

“Following the unfortunate events of Saturday’s Championship semi-finals, and deliberations by the Shamas Foundation Rugby (SRF), SRF would like to issue the following statement,” reads part of the letter.

“Termination of engagement with immediate effect of the following staff; James Kangethe, Joseph Kangethe, Julian Owino, Stephen Ottuo.”

“The Individuals mentioned above are no longer associated with the organizations and are not allowed to conduct business on behalf of SRF,” the letter further states.

Deen said Shamas culture doesn’t in any way promote or tolerate such behaviors.

KRU and Kenya Rugby Referees Association (KRRA) condemned the action where Kenya was beaten by the players at the end of the match.  The twin brothers had been sin-binned in the 78th minute of the match.  

“The Kenya Rugby Union strongly condemns the physical attack on center referee Said Kenya during the KRU Championship semi-final,” said KRU secretary general Ian Mugambi in a statement on Monday.

“This attack on the referee by three Shamas Rugby Foundation players goes against the spirit and values of the game,” explained Mugambi, adding there is no room for the abuse of match officials in Kenyan Rugby.

Mugambi said that a disciplinary process is underway and the outcome will be communicated once the process has been completed in line with World Rugby and KRU laws and regulations.

A video doing rounds on social media showed players attacking the referee as Shamas took on Catholic Monks in a semi-final encounter played at RFUEA Grounds.

Shamas lost the match 9-5 and lost a chance to earn promotion.


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