NAIROBI, Kenya, April 3 – Collins Injera and captain Humphrey Kayange scored a try each as Kenya beat Japan 12-5 in their first match of the International Rugby Board (IRB) Adelaide Sevens on Friday.It was a typical slow start by Benjamin Ayimba’s side who for most of the match struggled to pry open the stubborn Japanese defence who rushed up well whenever Kenya were on the attack.
Injera took his season’s try tally to 26 by opening the tournament with another sensational try with barely a minute on the clock.
Innocent Simiyu picked up where he left off last week going back against the drifting Japanese defence to unleash the Mwamba flier on the outside.
Injera produced two wicked sidesteps that left two opposing players for dead and fended off a covering Japanese defender to score with the conversion putting Kenya in the lead 7-0.
The score remained like that till halftime as Kenya tried to come to terms with the Japan’ rush defence.
The second half was more of a carbon copy of the first as Kenya continued to piece together unsuccessful attacks on the Japanese line.
Midway through the second period, Lavin Asego gave a pass to Injera who came off his wing and broke the Japanese line but failed to find Gibson Weru on his outside.
Japan continued to pile on the pressure by making inroads through the Kenyan centre coming close to scoring three minutes to full time.
Simiyu made a last gasp tackle inches from their tryline and some brutal counter rucking forced a turnover on Kenya’s side.
Substitute Sidney Ashioya picked up from the ruck, ran across offloading to Kayange who sprinted the length of the field to score in the corner to make the scores 12-0 with two minutes remaining
Togan born Alisi Tupuailei scored a consolation try for Japan in the dying seconds of the game.
Cook Islands is next up for Kenya on Saturday morning, 7.16 Kenya time and then face series leaders South Africa at 10.20 a.m.