KCB stay fo­cused

Bankers out to bag one of top two slots in Con­fer­ence A to boost play off chances

The Star (Kenya) - - Sports Local - RAY­MOND OTIENO @ray­mon­drolex

With the new Kenya Cup sea­son set to kick off on Novem­ber 5, former back-to-back cham­pi­ons KCB are de­ter­mined to se­cure one of the top two slots in their con­fer­ence in bid to in­crease their chances of qual­i­fy­ing for play­offs.

KCB’s Kenya Cup reign was cut short by even­tual run­ners up Im­pala Sara­cens who beat them 19-15 dur­ing the just con­cluded sea­son at Im­pala grounds. Im­pala have since be­come their bane af­ter edg­ing them, again, dur­ing the fi­nal of the Im­pala Flood­lit tour­na­ment by a close 33-32 mar­gin.

KCB are in Con­fer­ence ‘A’ that also in­cludes de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons Kabras Sugar, Nakuru RFC, Mwam- ba, Western Bulls and Univer­sity of Nairobi’s Mean Ma­chine. Con­fer­ence ‘B’ has Im­pala Sara­cens, Kenya Har­lequins, Home­boyz, Strath­more Leos, Blak Blad and Non­de­scripts.

“My plan this sea­son is to fin­ish top two in our con­fer­ence so as to reach the play­off stage. My play­ers are on toes and yearn­ing to make amends hav­ing lost last sea­son at a very cru­cial stage. We also lost nar­rowly to the same side dur­ing the just con­cluded Im­pala Flood­lit tour­na­ment,” said KCB team man­ager, Ron­nie Kangeta.

“We will not un­der­rate any team here and we will play ev­ery match like a fi­nal. There will be no room for er­rors and we will take ev­ery chance that comes.”

Kangeta is, how­ever, wary of his play­ers earn­ing call ups to the na­tional team. Five play­ers have since been called to join the Kenya Sim­bas, cur­rently in off sea­son as they await con- fir­ma­tion to re­sume train­ing ahead of the Curry Cup tour­na­ment in South Africa later this year. Two other play­ers, An­drew Amonde and Martin Owila, are meet­ing with the Kenya Sevens man­age­ment with the pos­si­bil­ity of mak­ing the cut into the team.

“We have got­ten used to play­ing with­out Amonde but should the other six play­ers join the na­tional team, then the gap will be huge. We, how­ever, hope the young play­ers will strive to blend in as these play­ers are not grow­ing any younger,” he added.

“In­juries and job com­mit­ments are also rob­bing the team of se­nior play­ers. Curtis Li­lako was side­lined dur­ing the Im­pala Flood­lit quar­ter-fi­nal due to a torn knee mus­cle and Billy Is­abwa keeps on pick­ing an in­jury when­ever he plays for the club. That means we have to get an­other Fly-half by the time the sea­son be­gins,” he added.

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