NAIROBI, Kenya, March 27 – The national rugby sevens rugby team came from 5-0 down at half time to beat West Indies 17-10 in their first match of the Hong Kong Sevens on Friday.
Kenya were trailing with less than two minutes on the clock when Claudius Butts crossed for the first try in the tournament after Kevin Mckenzie picked up a loose ball and sped through a gap in the Kenyan defence before offloading to Butts.
The combination of incessant Windies physical pressure and a relentless downpour did nothing to help Kenya’s cause in the first half as they failed to control the ball especially in contact situations and gave away penalties at the set piece.
The Caribbean side almost stretched a minute before half time after another Mckenzie break took them close to the Kenyan try line only for the score to be butchered by a stray pass.
Collins Injera got Kenya back in the game with a brilliant individual try to take his season’s tally to 21.
With Kenya on the backfoot in their own 22, Injera received a cut out pass from his brother and team captain Humphrey Kayange and wrong footed to Windies players as he sprinted 70 m to score under the posts to put Kenya 7-5 ahead.
Kayange got into the try scoring act himself after a Windies attack went pear shaped allowing Kayange to pick up a stray pass and run into the corner to score to make the scores 12-5 in Kenya’s favour.
At this point, fatigue began to creep into the Windies camp as they struggled to contain the strong runs of Innocent Simiyu and Lavin Asego.
The sevens minnows tried to launch an ambitious attack from their own 22 but failed to control the ball awarding the scrum to Kenya.
Kenya destroyed the Windies scrum with replacement scrumhalf Joshua Gathumbi passing to Asego who swept down the blindside to dot down.
In the other Pool F game , Scotland edged out the United States 19-17.
Kenya lock Horn with the Scots at 7.42 a.m. on Saturday morning Kenya time and then play the United States at 12.06 p.m.