NAIROBI, Kenya, May 14 – Kenya will face hosts France in the Main Cup quarter-final after narrowly losing 19-17 to titans New Zealand in the last Group A match at the penultimate round of the 2015-16 HSBC Sevens World Series season in Paris on Saturday.
Shujaa had done well to contain New Zealand for the better part of the match, leading 17-15 but a last gasp try from Gillies Kaka saw Kenya finish second in the Pool and book a date with the hosts in Sunday’s quarter-final at 12:57pm local time (+3GMT).
The Singapore 7s champions were on course for their second win against All Blacks this season having started well to take a 12-7 lead at the breather.
Akira Loane dotted down New Zealand’s opener after showing superb power and balance to swat away Willie Ambaka.
Shujaa found their footing when Collins Injera fed his elder brother Humphrey Kayange with a flat pass to score wide on the left.
Kayange turned provider when he picked up the ball at the bottom of the ruck, after Kenya attacked hard at the breakdown for the veteran to pop the ball up off the floor into the arms of Samuel Oliech who turned over by the posts before converting to hand his side a five-point lead at the break.
All Blacks had a try scrubbed off for a forward pass, just before Kenya got their third try when captain Andrew Amonde flat footed Sonny Bill Williams with a stop-and-go and then powered his way through the tackle of Kurt Baker.
However, another class finish from Loane gave his side hope with two minutes to go.
Substitute Kaka came up with the match-winning try for New Zealand from a quickly taken tap penalty on the hooter.
Kenya were out on their feet at the end but were left to rue a missed opportunity to kill the game off when they over complicated an attack inside the New Zealand 22 and Frank Wanyama’s knocked