NAIROBI, November 24 – Kakamega High School captain Felix Ayange is optimistic that his team will perform to its full potential at the International rugby Board (IRB) Dubai Sevens tournament this weekend.,
Ayange who led his team to the Regional Secondary Schools Championship title in Uganda last month said that his side will use that victory as a morale booster ahead of the tourney.
“We expect stiff competition in Dubai especially since we will be playing mostly college sides but I believe the talent we have will see us through,” said Ayange whose team will be returning to Dubai after a four year hiatus.
Kakamega who are also the national seven-a-side champions have within their ranks Michael Agevi Injera, the younger sibling to national sevens stalwarts Humphrey Khayange and Collins Injera a fact which Ayange says spurs the team on.
“We draw our inspiration from the national team who will also be in Dubai because they are our heroes and having Agevi who is brother to Collins and Humphrey in our team also gives us psyche (morale),” said Ayange.
Kakamega coach Ochieng Ahaya says that consistency is one of his team’s strengths and hopes that it will come to the fore in the Middle East.
“Wherever we play we never finish outside the main cup quarters and with the national team taking part in the same tournament, I’m sure we can go all the way,” said Ahaya.
“My team has competed very well against college sides and can run rings around much bigger players,” said Ahaya.
Ahaya said that Agevi has the capability of scaling the same heights like his elder brothers.
“Michael scored the winning try in Uganda and is one of the top players in the team and he has shown time and time again that he is there on merit not because of his name,” said Ahaya.
Kakamega have been drawn in Pool D which has Russian side Doverie, Dubai Knights made up of players from Dubai and the Arabian Gulf, Frenchside Pyrenees, Welsh outfit Urdd (Welsh League of Hope) which will be coached by a former Welsh Sevens captain Gareth Williams and South Africa’s Lydenburgh Rhinos.
The team which departs on Wednesday received apparel and kitbags from mobile phone company Zain at their Parkside Towers offices on Monday.
Felix Ayange, Joash Yongo, Duncan Lanya, Branton Shikami, Fabian Olando, Arnold Kipkorir, Kelvin Mukolwe, Michael Agevi, Kepha Abuogi, Augustine Lugonzo, Marlin Mukolwe and Upton Lubanga.
Ochieng Ahaya (coach), Oliver Minishi (team manager)