Kobs go all out for elusive league title

Monday March 01 2021
rugby01pix

Ambitious: Kob’s Mike Otto attempts to get past an opponent during the past season. The team is craving the league title. PHOTO/DEUS BUGEMBE.

By Deus Bugembe

The last five seasons have seen Betway Kobs collect six major honours – two Uganda Cups and four Sevens titles. They also boast the best silverware return in the same period, one better than Heathens at five and three ahead of Black Pirates.

It can go down as a successful period but their trophy cabinet has not seen a league in the same period. 

Heathens have won it thrice, Pirates once and Kobs are licking their wounds.
The 2019 title race exposed a self-destruction flaw in the famous loss to Pirates at Legends. The result gifted Heathens, who beat Walukuba and Rhinos in the next fortnight to take the title.

The chase for the elusive title has pushed Kobs into the market the past transfer window but none like the latest shopping spree is one of intent.

“The pressure is there. It has been a while since we last won it,” said Kobs captain Brian Asaba, who was not even assistant captain when Kobs last won it.

Brian Odong was deputised by Oscar Kalyango then. The two are a rare sight on pitch. A lot has changed since then apart from lifting a league title.

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A transfer window that gets you Arthur Mpande, Byron Oketayot, Mike Otto and Saul Kivumbi is good business and makes Kobs favourites in the new season that kicks off on Saturday. 

Brian Ochan, Robert Masendi and James Odongo are good additions to the backline.
“Signing good players isn’t enough. We need to get results. We’ve to learn to play with each other,” said Asaba.

The Kobs roster is scary on paper but whether they can translate it on the pitch remains to be seen. Coaches Fred Mudoola and Davis Kiwalabye have their hands full in the next 10 weeks.

Player                             From                            To
Arthur Mpande              Rhinos                        Kobs
Saul Kivumbi                 Impala                         Kobs
James Odong               Nondies                       Kobs
Byron Oketayot             Rhinos                         Kobs
Ivan Kirabo                    Kobs                            Rhinos
Nobert Okeny               Kobs                             Heathens
James Okello               Rhions                          Hippos
Eliphaz Emong             Homeboyz                  Hippos
Solomon Okia              Harlequins                  Pirates
Bagota Paul                 Buffaloes                     Pirates
Mishingaidze Peter    Heathens                     Pirates
Michael Otto                Heathens                     Kobs
Humphrey Magero      Kobs                            Rams
Nelson Mandela          Buffaloes                    Rams
Robert Masendi          Heathens                     Kobs
Ivan Mugirya                Kobs                             Warriors
Harold Adriko              Rhinos                          Warriors
Tylane Kamusiime     Rams                             Warriors
Matthew Ocoria         Pirates                           Buffaloes
Vicent Okello              Rhinos                           Buffaloes
Abdul Kiyimba           Heathens                       Buffaloes
Ivan Makmot             Warriors                          Buffaloes
David Akengo            Kabras                            Hippos
Brian Kizito                 Rams                              Impis
Ronald Musajjagu     Kobs                               Rhinos
James Wagabaza     Buffaloes                       Rhinos

dbugembe@ug.nationmedia.com

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