NAIROBI, Kenya, May 27 – A penalty try awarded to KCB early in the second half saw them complete a turn-around coming from 10-0 down to retain the Enterprise Cup title with a 27-23 win over rivals KCB at the RFUEA grounds on Saturday afternoon.
Apart from seeing them clinch a third consecutive Enterprise Cup title, the win over Kabras sees the bankers complete a season double having bagged the Kenya Cup title, also with a win against the boys from the sugar belt.
“They (Kabras) were better today and they showed they wanted to win. It wasn’t an easy match and this result is one brought about by the hard put into training by the boys. We played as a team and this was a great way to end the season,” KCB’s Andrew Amonde told Capital Sport after the match.
Ugandan Philip Wokarach who was in great form for the Western Kenya based team contributing 16 of Kabras’ 13 points was disappointed losing to KCB for the second consecutive time.
“I think we did well today but KCB wanted it more. We fought for the points but it is sad we could not get something off the game. We now shift attention to next season and hopefully, we will fight for a title,” he said.
Kabras had a positive start to the match leading KCB 10-0 after less than quarter of an hour. Wokarach’s converted try pulled them 7-0 up before the Ugandan international added three more points with a well booted penalty.
Melvin Mukolwe and Amonde however engineered a comeback for the bankers. Shortly after Mukolwe booted in a penalty, Amonde powered through from 10metres away to touch down with Mukolwe turning up to convert to take the scores to 10-10.
Wokarach though kept on his impressive form with a penalty that took Kabras back in the lead.
KCB had a chance to go ahead for the first time in the match but from a swiftly executed turn-over, Stafford Abeka dropped the ball as he encroached into the Kabras 25.
Big man Collins Wanjala however atoned for his team mate’s error with a powerful try on the left end of the pitch, bogging down Wokarach in the process and touching down. With the conversion short, KCB took a 15-13 lead.
The hard working Kabrasians were not willing to be run over by the bankers like it happened during the Kenya Cup and they turned on their enegines in search of another lead.
It was the Ugandan Wokarach who showed up again, kicking clean a penalty that took his side 16-15 up. KCB had two opportunities to reclaim the lead towards the end of the half.
First, Nick Ongeri took on a spirited run on the right only to be stopped a few mettres off the try line with a well calculated tackle from Max Adaka. At the stroke of half time, the bankers won a penalty but Mukolwe booted wide from a good position.
As the second half started, Kabras, under the tutelage of experienced tactician Charles Cardovilis who was taking charge of his second match came back stronger.
An error in passing by the KCB backline saw John Kabu win the ball, kicked it upfront with a successful chase that saw him land the try under pressure from a chasing pack. Wokarach added in the extras as Kabras scented victory with a 23-15 score.
Skipper Curtis Lilako though, leading from the front reduced the deficit for KCB with another powered try, pushing himself past the touchline on the right from a quickly executed scrum.
Minutes later, the bankers got the vital try, a penalty try awarded by the ref for a high tackle on Francis Mwita who had done well to evade bodies only to be brought down five metres off the try line.
Despite Kabras putting in the shift to claw back into the lead, a disciplined KCB side gave no room for errors as they held on to the lead, more vitally winning back possession when Kabras was pressing just after the buzzer had gone.