NAIROBI, Kenya, May 17 – Lock Martin Owila, was the hero of the day when he scored two tries to help Top Fry Nakuru RFC successfully defend the Kenya Cup title following their 20-13 victory over KCB Lions as 2013/14 season curtain came down at RFUEA Grounds on Saturday.
In the earlier kick-off, KCB II beat Nakuru II, 21-10 to lift the Eric Shirley Shield.
The win saw Wanyore beat the bankers for the second time after a month when they edged them 18-13 to be crowned Enterprise Cup champions for a sixth time.
“It was a great game since we have beaten them for the second time. We knew they had strong forwards but we took advantage in the scrum which we are best at to pin them down.
“For now we want to turn our attention to the chairman’s Cup and Bamburi Super Series where we are the defending champions under Ndovu, then hope to win safaricom sevens series for the first time,” delighted Nakuru head coach Dominique Habimana expressed after the win.
“I’m not happy with the officiating because the referee gave them all the 50/50 balls yet this was a very important game. But we tried our best and that’s how a final is you either win or lose.
“They have also known that we are good, even if they have won it did not come easy. We hope to perform well next season,” KCB captain Oliver Mang’eni stated.
Burundian, Habimana, kept faith with the squad that romped to their maiden title last season with Owila replacing injured Lawrence Buyachi as Mike Okombe and Nick Lang’o completed the back row.
The bankers on the other hand handed a surprise start to Stafford Abeka who partnered with Brian Sagara and Max Adaka at the back while internationals Moses Amusala and Curtis Lilako played as props with Peter Karia starting as a hooker.
With both sides playing cautiously, Darwin Mukidza opened the scoring for the Lions after 25 minutes through a penalty conversion before Javan Murayi, cut the lead when he also converted to level the scores at 3-3.
Wanyore extended the lead on the stroke of half-time after prop Isaiah Nyariki helped Owila touch the white wash from the scrum but Murayi failed to convert as they trailed three-time champions KCB 8-3 at the break.
The bankers resumed the better side with former international Peter Mutai being instrumental as Ken Moseti powered through to set Mukidza who sprinted from the left to touch down in the corner as he went on to convert his own to take the lead with 10-8 score line.
KCB could not sustain pressure from Wanyore who scored once again from the scrum with Owila who was awarded the most valuable player notching his brace after managing to push through to the white wash as Murayi’s kick went through the post for 15-10.
Mukidza pulled back when he converted a penalty to cut the lead to two points but that seemed to be their last score as Edwin Okemwa beat the defence to sprint from the right to slide home for the winner that saw Murayi miss conversion for a 20-13 win.
To reach the finals Nakuru had beaten Strathmore Leos 30-16 while KCB eased past former winners Lunch Bar Quins 18-13.