NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 13 – KCB rugby club head coach Curtis Lilako is confident his charges will complete double over their rivals Nakuru RFC when the two sides lock horns in the second leg of the Kenya Cup at the Nakuru Athletic Club on Saturday.
KCB were 33-0 winners over Nakuru when the Bankers hosted Wanyore in the first leg last November and Lilako, who is planning to approach the crunch cautiously hinted he will make drastic changes.
However, Nakuru know only too well that a victorious response is expected as they look to keep KCB from winning in Nakuru for the first time in over six years.
“We go away to Nakuru bearing in mind there is always a history between us and them especially in Nakuru but judging by the game we played here in the first leg, I think we are up to it and as I tell my boys we don’t go by history we make our own history,” Lilako said.
“Coming to this game will go the same way we did and last year against Nakuru we didn’t have some players but this time round we will have a few changes in the squad which I believe will be a stronger side to beat Nakuru,” the coach stated.
Lilako hailed new signing Ahmed Shaban saying the fly-half will bring flare into the team as they target to qualify for the playoff as Group A winners.
“Shaban is a very good player, he has good attacking skills and he is also good defenseive wise. I think he will bring flare that maybe we don’t have. He is a good addition to the team and I think he will blend as soon as possible,” Lilako, who won the Kenyan Cup title with KCB in 2014-15 season, stated.
After a bright start to the current campaign, that loss to KCB knocked the wind off the Wanyore’s sails, their current league position testament to this.
Saturday’s fixture before their loyal fans is the perfect opportunity for them to get things back on track.
The ever reliable Edwins Makori will once again be an influential figure for the Wanyore, tasked with marshaling his forwards including rising star Monate Atukei as well as the experienced Philip Kwame and Sammy Warui.
Wily half back and skipper Geoff Ominde will need to inspire his backs to turn up for the encounter if they are to make an impression and secure a result against the bankers who come into this tie with high confidence levels, undefeated and sitting second on the log, two points behind leaders Kenya Harlequin.
Key for the Bankers will be Davis Chenge who had massive game in the first leg blow out of the Wanyore. The former Kenya Sevens international links up with Peter Waitere and Rocky Aguko in the back row as they seek to snuff out any threat Nakuru may pose.
This match kicks off at 4.00pm and will be preceded by the Eric Shirley Shield encounter between the Nakuru and KCB second stringers.
The season will see them tackle Mean Machine and Kabras before the month ends. KCB enjoyed the perfect season before the festivities break, inflicting two defeats to Western Bulls with a 31 point margin and the Olago squad are in a position to win it all. The team will focus on young, energetic players who can give the squad necessary depth but still possess great quality.
-Material from Kenya Cup website used to compile this report-