Kenya 7s drop to Challenge Trophy in Wellington


Shujaa players locked in a prayer ritual before kick off in a past match.
(FILE)Shujaa players locked in a prayer ritual before kick off in a past match.

The Kenya Sevens national team Shujaa dropped to Wellington Sevens challenge trophy after falling 31-12 to England on Saturday in New Zealand.

Kenya went into the clash needing a win to progress following Argentina’s win over Papua New Guinea but Head Coach Innocent ‘Namcos’ Simiyu’s men emerged second best against their English opponents.

The fall orchestrated by the Cape Town Sevens champions means Shujaa will now play Russia in the challenge quarters at 01.00am on Sunday, 29.

A staggering head to head record of ten matches unbeaten in favour of England meant Shujaa would have to dig deep to claw a win, yet they easily lost the kick offs and possession besides costly cracks in their defence.

The English were searching for their third straight win in as many pool matches and did so successfully and will now take on Scotland in the Gold quarters.

“We were trying to build through the day today. It’s been a long time since we last played and it was a case of getting through our rustiness early on. Scotland next – we know them very well and we are pretty close with them after training with some of them for (Team) GB. It’s always a fierce game with them,” England Captain Tom Mitchell, who tipped over the 1,000 points mark in Wellington told worldrugby.org.

Argentina, who finished second behind England in Pool A with seven points, dealt Kenya its first defeat in Wellington after a 17-12 win over Kenya.

However, Shujaa made amends with a resounding 47-5 win over invitational team Papua New Guinea in their next match before going on to lose to England.

All time leading try-scorer Collins Injera who was making a return to the squad after missing the first two tournaments bemoaned the poor start while noting the need for improvement in their communication as a team.

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