NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 19 – The superb Alvin ‘Buffa’ Otieno scored the winning try as Shujaa came from a try down to beat Mike Friday’s USA 19-14 to progress to the semi-final of the Vancouver Sevens on Sunday.
Buffa completed a brace of tries with under three minutes left on the clock as the Kenyans put up superb work to book Ireland in the final.
The Americans had started off well with Kevon Williams dotting down within the opening 40 seconds of the game after citing space in the middle off a quickly taken line out. He blazed through to dot down under the posts. The conversion was good as they went 7-0 up.
But Shujaa responded in Kind, Otieno also dotting down after a powered run down the left. After a good offload from Daniel Taabu, Otieno powering through with some blistering pace before fending off one marker with a strong hand-off.
With the conversion, Shujaa drew 7-7.
But, the Americans came back into the game with Malacchi Esdale dotting down after an offload from Williams, the Americans having turned over possession with Kenya penalized for a forward pass.
But after the break, the Kenyans were relentless and Taabu dotted down their second try of the game with a good powered run on the right off a scrum. Williams had raced down to close him up, but some good piece of footwork set him off balance and the Kenyan crossed over.
The conversion was wide, but Kenya had pushed the game to within two points at 14-12.
With under three to go, Kenya were pushing the Americans and it was that man Buffa dotting down the winner with another powerful sprint down the middle off a scrum. The conversion was good as Shujaa led 19-14.
Despite some nervous end with USA winning possession off Kenya’s line-out, Innocent Simiyu’s men kept their composure and switched possession back to their arms with a turnover just out of their own 22.