NAIROBI, Kenya, July 1 – National 15s head coach Jerome Paarwater has made 11 changes from the side that won 29-22 against Namibia for their Wednesday’s second Confederation of African Rugby (CAR) Division 1A Cup match against hosts Madagascar.
Loose forward Andrew Amonde will captain the squad that seeks her first ever win over the hosts that will put their World Cup aspirations on the line before they conclude their round robin ties with a stubborn Zimbabwe on Saturday.
However, Team Manager Wangila Simiyu tipped the clash will not be an easy affair since Madagascar will be banking on the home advantage.
“Madagascar will not be an easy opponent, especially when you consider they are playing before their home fans. We are treating every game at these championships as a final and we are not taking anyone for granted.
“We cannot allow for complacency and overconfidence to creep in because we are well aware of the task at hand and must ensure that we finish the job,” Simiyu stated.
“Morale in the camp is high, all the players are in good shape and are raring to go. We brought a very capable squad and will put our best foot forward when we step out to play this match against the hosts,” he concluded.
The South African has opted to start with the KCB trio of loose-head Curtis Lilako, hooker Maxwell Adaka and tight-head Moses Amusala at the front row while Oliver Mang’eni, the only starting forward from Saturday’s game and Ronnie Mwenesi partnering at second row.
Western Bulls Davis Chenge makes his debut, featuring in a back row that includes Joshua Chisanga and Amonde who came on as an impact substitutes in the 65th minute to inspire the team to victory over Namibia.
Scrum half Lyle Asiligwa and fly half Kenny Andola will play as half backs with Nick Baraza and veteran Humphrey Kayange partnering in the midfield.
Michael Agevi starts at full back with Dennis Muhanji and Collins Injera playing on the wings.
The two sides have met three times with the Makis emerging victorious twice after a 22-16 score line during the 1987 All African Games in Nairobi and 24-20 win in Antananaravivo in October 2001 before playing to a 24-24 stalemate in their last encounter in 2005.
Both sides clash in an all to play for fixture on match day two of the championships where Kenya will not only be looking to defend her title but also fight for the lone spot in the global showpiece with Madagascar since both sides have never been in a World Cup.
For the hosts they are too aware of the significance of this tie, since they need to bounce back from Saturday’s 57-22 loss to the Sables to keep their hopes alive.
This match will kick-off at 3.00pm local time (GMT+3) and will be broadcasted live on Supersport 9.