Sim­bas fall to gritty Chile

Hong Kong Cup of Na­tions Rugby > Poor ball han­dling costs Kenya dearly in big loss to South Amer­ica op­po­nents

Daily Nation (Kenya) - - SPORT - BY AYUMBA AYODI say­odi@ke.na­tion­media.com

Sam On­somu of Kenya Simba shrugs off a chal­lenge from Dan Danye Jans of Hong Kong dur­ing their Test match at RFUEA grounds on Au­gust 20. Paawa­ter’s men play Rus­sia in Cup on Tues­day

Kenya Sim­bas launched their Hong Kong Cup of Na­tions cam­paign on a wrong foot­ing when they were crushed 23-3 by Chile at the Kings Park grounds, Hong Kong yes­ter­day.

Sim­bas failed to score a sin­gle try in a woe­ful dis­play that was char­ac­terised by poor ball han­dling from Jerome Paar­wa­ter’s boys while the Chileans ex­hib­ited pow­er­ful runs for the touch downs.

The Sim­bas’ hunt had a tur­bu­lent start when Nato Simiyu and Davis Chenge were sin-binned, forc­ing Biko Adema and Eric Kerre to cover up for them.

Chile could only man­age a penalty through To­mas Ianiszewski as Kenya put up some good de­fence and upon the re­turn of Nato and Chenge, Sim­bas upped their game with Dar­win Mukidza curl­ing over a penalty to draw level 3-3.

The Chileans eas­ily won turnovers af­ter cap­i­tal­is­ing on Sim­bas’ poor ball han­dling in the ruck to go 6-3 up at the break from an­other penalty. Chile were in a class of their own in the sec­ond half, pin­ning the Kenyans in their own half but failed to stretch their lead af­ter get­ting a penalty that Ianiszewski blasted low.

The un­re­lent­ing Chileans fi­nally got their first try through Ianiszewski, who went on to con­vert to stretch their lead to 13-3. Ianiszewski then con­verted Ben­jamin Soto’s try af­ter a su­perb flow from the Chileans to go up 20-3.

Ianiszewski added an­other penalty to see Chile go 23-3 to leave the hap­less Sim­bas stunned. Rus­sia scored a last­gasp penalty to tame Hong Kong 16-13 in the sec­ond match of the tour­na­ment.

The cham­pi­onships re­sume on Tues­day next week where Kenya take on Rus­sia with Hong Kong play­ing Chile.

It will draw to a close on Novem­ber 18 where Kenya will play Hong Kong with the Rus­sian test­ing the Chileans.

The Sim­bas are us­ing the cham­pi­onship to pre­pare for next year’s 2019 Rugby World Cup qual­i­fiers.

MARTIN MUKANGU | NA­TION

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