NAIROBI, Kenya, July 27 – Kenya rugby 7s will face defending champions New Zealand in the Main Cup quarter-finals at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games Sunday after securing two wins in Group B despite losing 20-0 in their final preliminary match against South Africa.
Earlier, Paul Treu charges, got off to a solid start after stewing Cook Islands 28-0 in their opener before seeing off Trinidad and Tobago 35-5 in their second match.
The last encounter saw Treu once again fail to beat his former employers as the record advanced to 6-1 this year following five loses at last season’s HSBC World Series to a single victory.
Shujaa found the going tough from the start with Springboks dominating the African derby as Cecil Afrika opened the lead after piling pressure to ground down for a 5-0 lead before Braco du Preez doubled the lead.
Afrika was instrumental for the third try, setting Saebolo Senalta while team effort saw Kwoggo Smith seal the win as the bronze medalist booked a date with hosts Scotland.
In the second match, Winger Dennis Ombachi scored a hat-trick of tries to send Kenya to Cup quarters after registering a resounding 35-5 win over Trinidad and Tobago in their second Group B match.
Shujaa had earlier on beat Cook Islands 28-0 in their opener as they dominated the contest with Ombachi, the Mwamba RFC player opening the scoring in the third minute after receiving a pass from fly-half Biko Adema who picked the ball from the scrum as he went on to convert for a 7-0 lead.
Ombachi then touched down his brace when he sprinted on the right after Kenya’s record try scorer Collins Injera fed him as Adema did well to convert from a tight angle for a 14-0.
Trinidad pulled one back after utilizing Kenya’s defensive lapse for Joseph Quashie to ground down from a kick as they missed the conversion.
Veteran Humphrey Kayange used his experience to score his first try of the tournament after breaking through from a solo effort as Adema’s kick went through for a 21-5 lead.
Ombachi completed his hat-trick three minutes later as Injera once again set him through to touch the white wash before Felix Ayange hammered the final nail on the coffin after powering through from the midfield.
In the opener, Injera scored a brace of tries to see Shujaa start on a winning note over Cook Island.
Injera opened the scoring midway through the first-half after splitting the defence to touch down with Adema converting for a 7-0 lead.
Shujaa built on their 7-0 lead upon resumption, with Treu bringing on Michael Agevi for Michael Wanjala who increased the pace of the game.
Injera completed his brace minutes later as Adema made no mistake to convert for a 14-0 lead.
Two minutes to the hooter, Billy Odhiambo dispossessed the Islanders to ground down for the third try before Agevi sealed the win.
Duford floored again
Kenyan top swimmer Jason Dunford, once again missed out the chance to medal in the 100m freestyle where he bowed out at the semi-finals after finishing last in a time of 50.78.
Dunford who was stripped off his 50m butterfly title on Friday by England’s Benjamin Proud will compete in his last event Sunday in 100m backstroke for his last stab at Commonwealth glory.
Meanwhile, Sylvia Tanya and Ger Jamie qualified to the semi-finals of women’s 50m Butterfly while Anita Zahra bid goodbye the competition after finishing seventh in heat 2.
Boxers punch their way up
Kenyan boxers continued to post good results, with Nicholas Okong’o progressing to round 16 of the lightweight after flooring Mauritius’ John Colin.
The three judges awarded Okong’o 29 points in each round to bag 89 points while Nickson Otieno punched Samoa’s Patelo Magagi in middleweight to storm round 16.
Simon Mulinge also sailed to round 16 after beating Namibian Immanuel Shapaka in flyweight to book a date with Lesotho’s Moroke Mokhotho.
Kenya Police Elly Ajowi knocked out Botswana’s Thabang Motsewabeng in light heavyweight to collect 83 points while Alumasa Matayo meet hosts Aquel Ahmen in light fly round 16.
Women performed better in Judo but could not reach the medal bracket as with Esther Akinyi come close but was bundled out by Scotland’s Sarah Adlington in the 78 kg in the semis.
Alice Chebet reached the quarters while Levy Kiplagat and Evans Ouko failed to go past the preliminary round in 90 kg and 100 kg respectively.
In Lawn bowls Mirriam Nyokabi was beaten by Jersey’s Lindsey Greechan in round 5, with same case applying in shooting where Shaminderpal Signh and Shitul Shah finished 24th and 25th.
Kenya also lost in the Queen’s Prize pairs final, finishing 13th as England won gold.
In Squash, Safina Madhani was eliminated in women’s consolation plate quarters by Kimbarley Borg of Malta 3-1with her male counterpart Hartaj Bains beaten by Zambia’s Mwinga Legwe by similar score line.
Kenya will seek her first medal Sunday, when track and field events kick-off with the Marathon as the country looks to defend the men’s title and eye for the women’s too.