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Kisii, Mombasa RFC promoted as Western Bulls and Mean machine relegated at Kenya Cup

Resolution Kisii Rugby Club and Mombasa RC are set to join Kenya Cup league next season.

Kisii qualified for the 2017/2018 top flight league season for the first time when they edged out former Kenya Cup participants United States International University-Africa (USIU-A) 6-3 during the KRU Championship semi-final at the Gusii Stadium on Saturday.

The 1997 Enterprise Cup champions Mombasa stormed back to the top flight rugby after they downed hosts Catholic Monks 11-10 at CUEA grounds in Kareng’ata.

However, Kisii and Mombasa will still meet to determine the overall winner of the Championship on April 22 this year at the RFUEA grounds

Mombasa last featured in Kenya Cup during the 2014/2015 season but were relegated alongside Catholic Monks.

Kisii and Mombasa will now take up Western Bulls and University of Nairobi’s Mean Machine’s places after the duo were relegated.

Fly-half Elvis Namusasi’s penalty in the dying minute catapulted Mombasa back to Kenya Cup.

Mombasa were the first off the blocks with a try from their winger Eric Baraka but Namusasi failed to convert. The Monks would stage a thrilling comeback when second-row John Chinjo grounded the ball from a rolling maul. They missed the conversion as the teams went to the break tied at 5-5.

Mombasa went ahead 8-5 courtesy of Namusasi’s penalty but the Monks were swift in reply with a try from eighth man Boniface Amimo to take a 10-8 lead.

It was then that Mombasa piled pressure on the Monks to earn a penalty in the last minute of play before a calm Namusasi curled it between the sticks to send the coastal lads into celebrations.

Kisii fly-half Crispus Onkoba and his USIU-A counterpart scored a penalty each as both teams went to break at 3-3. Onkoba’s penalty in the second half made the difference.

Mombasa team manager Kevin Odhiambo said that what drove them was the spirit and desire by his young players to know what top level league can offer. “It has been tough staying out of Kenya Cup for two seasons but it feels great to be back,” said Odhiambo.

Odhiambo acknowledged that Kenya Cup will present a different game altogether hence they will be required to have depth. “We wanted to first of all get back to the top level but we shall have to prepare well and recruit if we are to make an impact,” said Odhiambo.

Kisii captain George Sagini said their struggle since the formation of the club in 2009 has not been in vain. Sagini said their 17-11 victory against USIU-A early in the season is what gave them the confidence.

“We knew we would make it having beaten an experienced side like USIU-A,” said Sagini, adding that they are ready for the big league.

“We now need to bolster our team since it won’t be easy.

Daily Nation

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