NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 1 – Kenya Simbas has been handed a major boost ahead of the 2019 Rugby World Cup repechage after former captain Wilson Kopondo was named in a 33-man squad scheduled to report training camp on Monday.
Kopondo has been out due to injury, missing the Africa Gold Cup cum 2019 World Cup qualifier where Kenya lost to Namibia in the decider.
The squad sees the inclusion of new faces Thomas Okidia, Ephraim Oduor and Elvis Namusasi while there was no space for seasoned players Curtis Lilako, Oscar Simiyu, Isaac Adimo, Edmund Anya and Erick Kerre.
The Marseille repechage is the Simbas final stab at qualification for the 2019 Rugby World Cup after missing out on the African berth when they finished second to eventual qualifiers Namibia during the Gold Cup which also doubled up as the African round of qualifying.
They will be up against Canada, Germany and Hong Kong in the round robin competition whose winner will secure a ticket to compete against New Zealand, South Africa, Italy and Namibia in Pool B of next year’s tournament in Japan.
The team starts training on Monday 3 September.
Props: Patrick Ouko (Menengai Cream Homeboyz), Moses Amusala (KCB), Thomas Okidia (Menengai Cream Homeboyz), Ephraim Oduor (Kabras Sugar), Joseph Odero (Kabras Sugar), Hillary Mwanjilwa (Kabras Sugar)
Hookers: Colman Were (Kabras Sugar), Peter Karia (KCB), Philip Ikambili (Menengai Cream Homeboyz)
Locks: Wilson Kopondo (Kenya Harlequin), Andrew Chogo (Kabras Sugar), Oliver Mang’eni (KCB), Malcolm Onsando (Kenya Harlequin)
Backrow: George Nyambua (Kabras Sugar), Dalmus Chituyi (Menengai Cream Homeboyz), Elkeans Musonye (Strathmore Leos), Davis Chenge (KCB), Martin Owilah (KCB)
Scrum halves: Samson Onsomu (Resolution Impala Saracens), Mohamed Omollo (Menengai Cream Homeboyz), Xavier Kipng’etich (Resolution Impala Saracens)
Fly Halves: Darwin Mukidza (KCB), Elvis Namusasi (Regional Logistics Mombasa)
Centers: Leo Seje (Resolution Impala Saracens), Maxwell Kang’eri ( Menengai Cream Homeboyz), Peter Kilonzo (KCB), Zedden Marrow (Menengai Cream Homeboyz), Felix Ayange ( Kabras Sugar)
Back Three: Tony Onyango (Menengai Cream Homeboyz), Vincent Mose (Resolution Impala Saracens), Jacob Ojee (KCB), William Ambaka (Kenya Harlequin)
Utility: Biko Adema (Nondescripts)
-By KRU website-