RUGBY Kenya limbers up for Cameroon
by Daily Nation
Referees from Madagascar will officiate the Rugby World Cup qualifier/Africa Rugby Confederation Cup match between Kenya and Cameroon on Saturday at the Rugby Football Union of East Africa ground.
The centre referee will be Victor Lie assisted by Ansoniandro Randrianorosao and Jocelyn Rija Ravelonahiana. The match commissioner is Zambia’s Peter Manda.
In the meantime, Frank Sabwa, the Kenya Rugby Football Union secretary will travel to Madagascar as match commissioner for the Madagascar/Botswana tie.
Two South African coaches were due Monday to help tune up the national team for the match against Cameroon. They are Hendrik Johannes Bekker and Gred Douglas Hechter.
However, the Kenya 15’s technical bench are anxiously waiting for the results of a scan on the left knee of Kenya Harlequin centre Victor Sudi before taking a decision whether he will be fit for the match against Cameroon.
Sudi, whose younger brother Innocent Simiyu will captain Kenya against Cameroon, twisted his left knee during the Kenya Cup match against Nakuru on Saturday. It is one of the changes coach Michael ‘Tank’ Otieno and his two assistants are contemplating making before naming the team on Wednesday afternoon.
Two other players are unavailable. Lewis Olaka and Anthony Ogot who are both good line out jumpers are out. Olaka has job commitments and Ogot has been suspended by his club Kenya Commercial Bank. “This will pave way for some new players to come up and cement their places,” explained Otieno.
The options he has are Wilson K’Opondo and Paul Oketch who play the same roles at their clubs in Mean Machine and Mwamba.
Assistant coach Edward Kinyany expects a very physical match against Cameroon who narrowly lost 10-16 to Tunisia in their first match on June 14 in Yaounde. “They are quite physical and have a natural build which favours contact game. We can counter this because Kenya has the most mobile pack in this group,” he said.
The idea is not to get sucked into their game but at the same time not shy away from contact,” Kinyany said.
Kinyany added that Kenya would just play own game and also focus on the away match against Tunisia on August 2 in Tunisia.
Kenya will play a friendly match against Kenya Harlequin on tomorrow from 5 pm at the RFUEA ground to try out some of the moves they will use against Cameroon.
Simiyu reiterated that the goals for the team remained on course. He acknowledged this was a tough Pool but Kenya was keen to reach the second round and eventually qualify for the 2011 Rugby World Cup. “We want to break into the top 20 in the IRB ranking. Against Cameroon, we shall be at home and that is enough reason to gun for a win because we have everything going for us. Our preparations have gone well and there is a lot of self belief in this team,” the captain explained.