12 changes for Kenya Simbas ahead of Downtouch Griffons showdown

Paul Odera

Kenya Simbas coach Paul Odera at a match against Zambia on August 24, 2019 during Victoria Cup rugby match at RFUEA ground.

Photo credit: File | Chris Omollo | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Most changes have been forced by injury.

Head coach Paul Odera has made 12 changes as second-from-bottom Kenya Simbas meet second-ranked Downtouch Griffons in Currie Cup First Division at 4pm EAT at the 8,500-seater Pelatona Stadium in Welkom, South Africa.

Most changes have been forced by injury.

“First choice prop Ian Njenga is injured and he is out for the next six months. He had a successful surgery on Monday and is recovering well. He will travel back to Nairobi when it is medically safe for him to do so.  Second choice Andrew Siminyu is also injured while Ephraim Oduor starts off the bench alongside lock Brian Juma,” Odera said.

Skipper Daniel Sikuta, scrumhalf Brian Tanga and Vincent Onyala are rested for this fixture while George Nyambua is out with a heel injury. Jone Kubu sits out with ankle and knee injuries while Darwin Mukidza is out of this fixture with a wrist injury.

John Okoth has a groin strain and is rested as a precaution.

Edward Mwaura, Brian Waraba and Patrick Ouko are part of a new-look front row.

“Mwaura is promoted to the starting lineup after a solid scrummaging effort. Waraba threw 100 percent of his lineouts successfully and got promoted to the starting 15, while Ouko, who is one of the match day vice captains, brings a fresh pair of legs in the front row.”

“Griffons are a good team and we will have to scrummage well if we are to contain their forwards. Our line speed on defence also has to improve because if we give them time and space they will punish us.”

Elkeans Musonye captains the side in the absence of Sikuta.

Simbas will head into the Griffons match seeking their first win after losing 51-14 against Valke on April 9 and picking their first point in the narrow loss against Zimbabwe.

Kenya and Zimbabwe are using the prestigious South African tournament to prepare for the 2022 Rugby Africa Cup slated for July 2-10 in France which will double as the 2023 Rugby World Cup qualifiers.


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