IN GULU, UGANDA
Rugby 15s champions Kakamega High School underlined their title credentials an impressive 69-14 win over Uganda’s Mbarara High School as the East Africa Secondary School Games got underway on Saturday in Gulu.
The Kenyan side was in a class of their own as they ran in nine tries in the lop-sided encounter played at the Comboni Vocational Institute. The win saw Kakamega High, popularly known as Barbarians, earn a bonus point after they scored more than four tries to secure five points.
Prop Chrisant Ojwang got proceedings underway with two converted tries as Kakamega showed intention of claiming a seventh title with an early 14-0 lead. Mbarara struggled to leave their own 22 as Kakamega pressed them back.
Derrick Ashihundu, Barry Opondo and Timothy Omela extended Kakamega’s advantage as the Kenyans led 28-0 at halftime. The hosts would improve after the break and got a converted try through Emmanuel Kwebikanga.
However, Kakamega killed any hopes of a Mbarara comeback with four more tries through Fredrick Mwalati, Valerian Tendwa, Alvin Wanjala and Eugene Mayinzi. Mbarara would give the score a decent look with a late Philip Mohoozi try that was converted.
Kakamega coach Amos Wamanga was pleased with good start but lamented lapse in concentration that allowed Mbarara to get tries.
“It was a good result. A win allows us to grow in confidence in this competition but we have to improve on our concentration going forward,” Wamanga told Sunday Nation Sport. Kakamega face Upper Hill in their second match on Sunday. His Mbarara counterpart Alex Tumsimwe believes his side will get better in their subsequent matches.
Upper Hill went down 12-7 to 2015 winners Laiser Hill in an all-Kenyan match at the same venue. Former Upper Hill flyhalf Johnstone Olindi impressed, scoring a try and a conversion and Joel Inzuga added another try. Upper Hill’s Brian Kimani got his side’s sole try, and Abutwalib Wesonga dully converted but it was not enough to prevent the loss.
In girls’ basketball, reigning champions Kaya Tiwi secured a narrow 37-36 win over compatriots Tigoi Girls in another all-Kenyan clash at Kaunda grounds.
The topsy-turvy affair saw Kaya Tiwi trail 13-8 in the opening quarter before the sides sunk six points each in the second quarter as Tigoi led 19-14 at halftime. Kaya Tiwi would improve in the third quarter, outscoring their opponents 11-4 but Tigoi took the final quarter 13-12 but suffered a painful lost by half a basket.
“It was close shave for us. We almost got caught out due to low scoring but I’m confident we will improve going forward,” Kaya Tiwi coach Philip Onyango said.
Men’s champions APE Rugunga of Burundi beat Uganda’s Baptiste 62-54.