NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 9 –The national men’s sevens team began their Rio Olympics campaign on a losing note after suffering a 31-7 defeat at the hands of Great Britain as the men’s competition got underway on Tuesday at the Deodoro Stadium.
Kenya got their only try in the second half through Billy Odhiambo with Biko Adema converting as Shujaa were left with a must win in their next group B match against New Zealand tonight at 11:30pm.
Japan, who are also in the same pool as Shujaa shocked heavy weights New Zealand 14-12 to complicate the group where only the top two sides progress to the quarter-finals.
Despite fielding his strongest starting seven led by veteran Humphrey Kayange, the Benjamin Ayimba side failed to sparkle as they found themselves trailing 24-0 at the break.
Osar Ayodi missed a tackle as Norton Dan powered through for the opening try but squandered the conversion for a 5-0 lead.
Great Britain who were looking strong from kick-off, charged forward and Kenya could not handle the pressure as they lost possession for Burgess Phil to produce a brilliant display to sprint past Ayodi all the way between the sticks and extend the lead.
Shujaa’s form could deep further after a good exchange of passes from Great Britain settled on the hands of Bibby Dan, who didn’t disappoint as he grounded to extend the lead.
With only a minute on the hooter, Great Britain chose to play on and indeed it paid as Bennett Mark dotted down for the converted try that ensured his side go to the breather comfortably leading by four tries.
Returning for the last period, Kenya started on a high with intentions of making a comeback as Odhiambo pulled one back after skipper Andrew Amonde offloaded the pass.
However, it was the last time Kenya could reach their opponent’s half as Great Britain sealed the win through Dan who hammered Shujaa’s final nail on the coffin after Willy Ambaka dispossessed the ball.