Cranes intend to end Elgon Cup drought

Saturday July 13 2019

Cranes’ centre pairing of Pius Ogena (L) and

Cranes’ centre pairing of Pius Ogena (L) and Ian Munyani (down). Photo by Eddie Chicco.  

By DEUS BUGEMBE

KAMPALA- The Rugby Cranes last won the Elgon Cup in 2015 and many Kenyans will argue it was because they fielded a second string side in `Kenya A’. The next three years saw Kenya respond with consecutive wins but Uganda can end that streak today.

With a 16-13 win from the first leg three weeks ago in Kisumu, Uganda have to hang in to protect or build on the three point leverage. “You cannot come with a mentality of protecting the first leg result but come to win the game because it’s a safer bet,” said Cranes coach Robert Seguya.

Any result but a loss of more than three points will turn Kyadondo into a celebration hub but the Cranes will first have to outlive a tasking 80 minutes of rugby. Like Seguya loves saying “Games between Uganda and Kenya have never been easy irrespective of the winner,” today’s return leg will be a sterner test as Kenya has bolstered the travelling roaster.

Kenya Sevens pair of Andrew Amonde and Jacob Ojee along with Curtis Lilako and Billy Odhiambo are some of the notable changes expected to help Kenya overturn the deficit.

The venue, Kyadondo, favours Uganda’s running game which is their biggest weapon but with the likes of Amonde deployed in Kenya’s more studded pack, Uganda’s forwards have a field day in line and they will have no option but to show up.

Lady Cranes prioritise improvement
The Lady Cranes went down 44-13 in Kisumu and unlike their male counterparts, they are not thinking about winning the Elgon Cup but putting up a polished show. They looked below par in Kisumu as Kenya ran rings around them.

Coach Edgar Lemerigar has promised to match the lionesses who have made seven changes from the first leg. “Definitely, I can guarantee the team will play better than what we saw in Kisumu. We have worked on where we fell short and cleaned up on the structures,” he said.

Squad

Today at Kyadondo
Lady Cranes vs Kenya Lionesses 2pm
(Kenya lead 44-13 on aggregate)
Rugby Cranes vs Kenya Simbas 4pm
(Uganda lead 16-13 on aggregate)

dbugembe@ug.nationmedia.com

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