NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 27 – Ahead of the crucial Africa Gold Cup decider, the national 15s team was hosted at a welcome dinner on Wednesday evening by the Kenya High Commission in Namibia as they seek to reclaim the continental title they last lifted in 2013.
Team Manager Simiyu Wangila vowed his charges will make Kenyans smile on Saturday when the Simbas lock horns with the hosts and defending champions Namibia in the crunch to be played at the Hage Geingob Stadium in Windhoek.
“We are representing Kenya wherever we go and we are very grateful for the reception from the Kenya High Commission in Namibia as well as the support we received from your counterparts in Zimbabwe. It goes a big step in raising the team’s spirits as we represent the flag and the country,” Wangila said.
“When the national anthem will be sung, it’s the 40 million Kenyans that we are representing. Having being welcomed well here in Namibia, we will take the same spirit to the field when we play Namibia. We just want to make a Kenyans smile back at home,” Wangila assured.
Present at the event were staff from the High Commission as well as members of the Kenya Welfare Association Namibia who not only officially welcomed the team to Namibia but wished them well in Saturday’s do or die match.
Prior to the evening’s proceedings, a minute of silence was observed in honor of departed KCB RFC utility back James Kilonzo who lost his life in a robbery incident in Kasarani, Nairobi on Monday 24 July.
Kerubo Omurwa from the Kenya High Commission in her remarks said, “We have mobilized the Kenyan community in Namibia to turn up in large numbers, be prepared for their support and show us what you are made of.”
Her sentiments were echoed by Fredrick Muketi, Vice Chairman of the Kenya Welfare Association Namibia.
The team continues with its preparations for Saturday’s fixture with sessions on Thursday while the squad is set to be named on Friday by head coach Jerome Paarwater.
To reclaim the title and win their second crown, the Simbas must win the game without Namibia scoring a losing bonus point or win the game with a try bonus point even if Namibia scores a losing bonus point.
Namibia will on their side retain the cup with a win, draw or lose with a losing bonus point if Kenya doesn’t score a try bonus point.