Shujaa shift focus to Gold Sevens in US Angeles

Monday, May 17th, 2021 00:00 | By
Shujaa’s Daniel Taabu passes the ball to Alvin Otieno during their match against South africa at the Rugby Africa 7s Solidarity Camp, in Stellenbosch on May 14, 2021. Photo/AFP

Kenya Sevens rugby team has shifted focus to the Los Angeles Gold Sevens between June 25-26 where Shujaa is guaranteed of more quality pre-Olympic test matches after finishing second in the just concluded Africa Solidarity Camp.

 The 10-day event hosted at the Stellenbosch Academy of Sports was a learning curve for Shujaa who finished behind South Africa in a four-team competition where Uganda finished third and Zimbabwe Cheetahs finished fourth.

 Shujaa boss Innocent Simiyu termed the four losses to Springboks as tough for them but admitted the chance to play at such intensity is what the team needed to test their combinations and strategies a month to another pre-Olympic tournament, the Gold Sevens in Los Angeles, where Kenya will meet Samoa and Korea for the first time this year.

Uganda Cranes and Zimbabwe will be in Monaco where they will play 10 tough opponents in the final Olympics qualifier, the repechage.

 “It was tough to lose to South Africa four times but we were happy to get a chance to play games at a very high intensity,” Simiyu told People Sport from Stellenbosch, South Africa.

 Throughout the two tournaments, only four Shujaa players scored a try against the Boks who identified kick offs and restarts were not well articulated by Shujaa to draw first blood in all the four matches.

 “The camp was very good for us. We managed to try out the next combinations and strategies. 

As well as work on three areas of our game that needed improvement.  Kick off receipts, tackle completion rate and breakdown,” added Simiyu.

 In the final on Saturday, South Africa led 24-0 before Kenya scored the consolation try through Alvin Otieno.

Conversion was missed and comeback was almost impossible moments later as the hosts increased their margin to 31-5 for the win.

On Friday, Kenya suffered a 38-7 loss where winger Nelson Oyoo scored the solitary try converted by Daniel Taabu. 

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