Brave Kenya Simbas fall to Down Touch Griffons in South Africa

Brian Tanga

Kenya Simbas' Brian Tanga (second right) during a training session at the RFUEA grounds on October 25, 2021.

Photo credit: Chris Omollo | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • The Simbas, who still remain win-less after losing to Valke 51-14 and Zimbabwe Goshawks in the first two matches, scored five tries through Samuel Asati (two), Matoka Matoka, Thomas Okeyo and Brian Wahinya. Geoffrey Ominde made four conversions.
  • Griffons ran in 10 tries through Granwill Matthys (five), Soso Xakalashe, Jaywinn Juries, Duann Pretorius, Gurshwin Nikhole and Keanu Vers. Juries successfully made six conversions, while Aphiwe Stemele made two.

Kenya Simbas put up a spirited fight but lost 66-33 against hosts Down Touch Griffons in Currie Cup First Division in South Africa on Saturday.

The Simbas, who still remain win-less after losing to Valke 51-14 and Zimbabwe Goshawks in the first two matches, scored five tries through Samuel Asati (two), Matoka Matoka, Thomas Okeyo and Brian Wahinya. Geoffrey Ominde made four conversions.

Griffons ran in 10 tries through Granwill Matthys (five), Soso Xakalashe, Jaywinn Juries, Duann Pretorius, Gurshwin Nikhole and Keanu Vers. Juries successfully made six conversions, while Aphiwe Stemele made two.

Pretorious wriggled through the Kenyan defence to put the hosts 5-0 up on seven minutes as Juries added the extras for a 7-0 lead. Matthys, who was Kenya's tormentor-in-chief, got his first try four minutes later for 12-0.

Kenya won a penalty on 13 minutes inside Griffons' half and opted for an unfruitful line-out.

A forward pass saved Kenya in the 16th minute but Nikhole’s clever kick-and-chase resulted in a converted try for the hosts. Juries stretched the hosts’ lead to 26-0 after converting his own try following a good kick from Nikhole that caught Kenyan defence flat-footed.

Asati registered Kenya’s first try near the sticks after diving over at the half-hour mark after Griffons defense had stopped them severally. Ominde converted the try for a 26-7 scoreline.

Griffons restored their 26-point lead almost immediately through a converted try from Matthys who crossed over after speeding past two defenders for a 33-7 score at the breather.

Simbas started the second half on the back foot after conceding another try but a clever kick from Asati resulted into a converted try from Matoka.

Griffons then scored two tries for a 52-14 lead but Asati crossed over from a well-worked converted try at the hour mark.

Okeyo added a try after picking up a good pass from Coleman Were on the left to reduce the arrears to 52-26 on 65 minutes. Kenya survived a Griffons onslaught five minutes later, but Matthys was again on the scoreboard on 74 minutes to stretch their lead to 59-26.

Another try from Vers converted by Stemele saw Griffons go 66-26 up. Ominde converted Brian Wahinya’s try for a 66-33 win for the hosts.

Kenya, who face Border Bulldogs in Cape Town on May 7, are using the 10-team competition to prepare for 2022 Rugby Africa Cup-cum-2023 Rugby World Cup qualifiers slated for July in France.

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