Shujaa drops in Sevens ranking
The national rugby sevens team ‘Shujaa’ has dropped two places in the World sevens series standings, to occupy an awkward 12th position and are poised for another acid test at the London Sevens in Twickenham this weekend where they will face the series log leaders Argentina, second-placed South Africa and Main Cup finalist in Toulouse, Ireland, in pool B.
In France during the three-day action, Shujaa only managed a single win in five matches to collect just a point in the campaign, while Samoa and New Zealand collected 15 and 8 points respectively to leapfrog them on the global standings.
Samoa, New Zealand and Fiji are miraculously on top of Kenya even after missing several legs, and it remains a surprise how Kenya is currently in position 12 despite the fact that they have featured in all the seven legs.
Toulouse was New Zealand’s third outing this season yet the side has amassed 39 points so far while for Samoa it was their fourth leg this season.
To be grouped with the top-performing trio in Group B, Shujaa’s mettle will be tested in London where they have previously posted memorable results.
Kenya last beat Argentina before the Covid-19 disruption back in 2019, a season where Kenya claimed two wins in both meetings during that campaign while Ireland claimed the first win over Shujaa in their first meeting in April this year.
Their final group opponent and continental rivals South Africa missed out on the cup quarters for the first time in nine years and will be psyched up to maintain their perfect winning streak over Shujaa as they plan to seek redemption to regain their lead in the 16-team log, to boost their chances of defending the overall title in the same pool with the leaders who claimed a two-pointer lead against the South Africans.
Meanwhile, despite the four losses over the weekend, Shujaa still displayed the will to fight and at the end of the tournament, Bush Mwale and Billy Odhiambo were among the top six impact players despite only featuring in five matches while the rest featured in six matches including respective finals.
Bush Mwale was ranked third while Billy Odhiambo was fifth. Ireland’s dependable Terry Kennedy made the most carries and eventually the most breaks for an impressive 66 points while USA Eagles scoring machine Kevon Williams was second with 55 as Mwale came in third place with 54 points.
Fourth and fifth positions were tied on 52 points to have USA Eagles’ Lucas Lacamp take up the fourth place while Billy was fifth and hosts most valuable player Paulin Riva was sixth with 50 points.