Simbas fall to Senegal in World Rugby Cup opener


CHARGED LIKE A RHINO:Darwin Mukidza of Kenya Simbas takes a conversion against Germany during ...
(FILE)CHARGED LIKE A RHINO:Darwin Mukidza of Kenya Simbas takes a conversion against Germany during their Tatu City Series test match at the RFUEA Grounds on May 27, 2017.he has been feted for a stellar season.PHOTO/Sportpicha

In Summary

  • The national 15s team Simbas kicked off their 2022 World Rugby Cup quest with 19-20 loss at the hands of Senegal at the Nyayo Stadium, Nairobi on Saturday
  • Fijian Jona Kubu had a barnstorming afternoon for Simbas despite the loss, scoring 10 points. He got on the scoresheet after 14 minute' of play as he punished an indiscipline Senegalese defence with two quick penalties

The national 15s team Simbas kicked off their 2022 World Rugby Cup quest with 19-20 loss at the hands of Senegal at the Nyayo Stadium, Nairobi on Saturday.

Fijian Jona Kubu had a barnstorming afternoon for Simbas despite the loss, scoring 10 points. He got on the scoresheet after 14 minute’ of play as he punished an indiscipline Senegalese defence with two quick penalties.

Simbas, holding a 6-0 lead, were penalized for a handling error with Senegal flyhalf Mamadou Ndiaye slotting in the penalty. Kubu struck again just after the restart picking up the ball from his own 22-yard area and slicing through to force a penalty.

Darwin Mukidza would find himself charging alone as the Senegal defence greased a slippery Kubu who offloaded a superb pass to a waiting Mukidza in the left wing of the pitch for a 11-3 scoreline in favour of Simbas. Kubu added the extras for a 13-3 score-line heading to the interval.

Soon after the second half, Senegal would come knocking at the Simbas territory showing intent of scoring a try to cut the deficit. The visitors’ pressure paid off as they grabbed a converted try through Ndiaye Mamadou to narrow the scoreline to 13-10.

A Senegal error in their territory saw the centre referee penalise the Senegalese. Kubu slotted it for a 16- 13 advantage with Senegal also slotting in a penalty through Ndiaye.

Kubu’s then sidestepped the Senegal defence to slot in a drop kick for a 19-13 in favour of the Paul Odera coached side. With ten minutes left on the clock Kubu would be stretched off with a hamstring injury.

A fist fight broke as tensions rose with the referee forced to caution both captains. Senegal found the telling moment in the end as Nduaye scored a converted try to settle the tie.

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Story By Benson Mbare
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