NAIROBI, Kenya, June 7 – KCB RFC Fly-Half Darwin Mukidza will skipper the Kenya Simbas in Saturday’s Elgon Cup first leg clash away to Uganda in the absence of regular Wilson Kopondo who sits out through a shoulder injury.
Making the squad of 23 named by Team Manager Simiyu Wangila on Wednesday is Newcastle Falcons back-row Joshua Chisanga.
Chisanga returns for the first time since sealing the move to English Premiership side that saw him miss 2016 internationals as well as 2017 opening match against Germany in May.
Speaking to Kenya Rugby Union ahead of their departure, the utility back who features for current Kenya Cup champions KCB said, ” I feel privileged, I am handling an elite group of players and look forward to their cooperation in executing whatever plans management has. We expect to register a positive result.”
Mukidza, who made a try scoring debut for the Simbas in the 41-15 win over Portugal in Nairobi on Saturday 30 May 2015, has featured in the team’s last 11 consecutive tests since then.
Moses Amusala, Peter Karai and Dennis Karani maintain their position in the forwards as Simon Muniafu and Oliver Mangeni set to pair at lock for once against Uganda.
Davies Chenge, Eric Kerre and Martin Owila are the trip’s back-rows, Biko Adema and Samson Onsomu go as half-backs while Jacob Ojee, Patrice Agunda, David Ambunya, Mukidza and Tony Onyango making the entire back-line.
KCB skipper Curtis Lilako who missed last international match against Germany due to form issues makes the team after receiving a call up in late May.
Skipper Wilson Kopondo is ruled with an injury sustained during the test against Germany but he’s in the run to be fit for the second leg of the Elgon Cup. Darwin Mukidza captain the team in Kampala.
Starting line-up will be named on Friday in Kampala.
Uganda has already named the squad that includes Kenyan based duo of Philip Wokorach and Ivan Kirabo who have had a fantastic Kenya Cup season with double losing finalists Kabras Sugar.
Last year’s first leg of the Elgon Cup saw Kenya beat Uganda 48-10 in Kampala before claiming a 45-24 in the return leg in Nairobi.
1.Moses Amusala (KCB), 2. Peter Karia (KCB), 3. Dennis Karani (Resolution Impala Saracens), 4. Simon Muniafu (Resolution Impala Saracens), 5. Oliver Mang’eni (KCB), 6. Eric Kerre (Resolution Impala Saracens), 7. Davis Chenge (KCB), 8. Martin Owila (KCB), 9. Sam Onsomu (Resolution Impala Saracens), 10. Biko Adema (Nondescripts), 11. Jacob Ojee (KCB), 12. Patrice Agunda (SportPesa Quins), 13. David Ambunya (SportPesa Quins), 14. Darwin Mukidza (KCB), 15. Tony Onyango (Menengai Cream Homeboyz).
REPLACEMENTS 16. Philip Ikambili (Menengai Cream Homeboyz), 17. James Kubasu (Resolution Impala Saracens), 18. Curtis Lilako (KCB), 19. George Nyambua (Kabras Sugar), 20. Joshua Chisanga (Newcastle Falcons, England), 21.Kelvin Masai (Menengai Cream Homeboyz), 22. Isaac Adimo (SportPesa Quins),23. Leo Seje (Resolution Impala Saracens).
Management: Jerome Paarwater (HEAD COACH), Charles Ngovi, Dominique Habimana (ASSISTANT COACHES), Richard Ochieng ( S&C), Chris Makachia (PHYSIO), Simiyu Wangila (TEAM MANAGER).
-By Raga House-