The second round of the Nile Special rugby premiership has a stark contrast for the teams in this match up – the Hippos are on their best run ever since they joined the elite league with Robert Sseguya coming on board as one of the coaches and right away his influence has been felt. On top of their nonstop running game, a sense of structure and better fifteens game understanding is now something that is assimilated with the Hippos.
The Jinja side has made their home turf a tough place to visit as recent results would show, putting Mongers to the sword and then stressing the table leaders who only pulled away to get the bonus point late in the game; leaving Dam Waters with only 28-07 which was a huge contrast to the first round result that was 51-12.
This time round, they host a fairly demotivated Rhinos side that felt the wrath of the Pirates at their new home in Bweyogerere and the Hippos couldn’t ask for a better time to play the Rhinos eyeing their fourth win of the season.
Rhinos have had a season of mixed emotions from the loss of vital cogs in the team, to some big wins of their own and then a couple of losses they wish to forget as soon as possible. After the tirade of last weekend, the men in yellow will be having one thing on their minds and that is redemption. They find themselves in a position that is uncharacteristic of their stature and sit in 7th position just a point more than their hosts on the weekend which adds more spice to the encounter as a direct fight for 7th place – winner takes all; a Hippos win would mean that they leapfrog Rhinos while a Rhinos victory or draw gives them slight breathing space going forward.
Robert Sseguya will be having a few more tricks up his sleeve and judging from the spirited performance the Jinja boys put up against the Heathens, this will be another epic thriller for the rugby faithful in eastern Uganda. Rhinos will be hoping to have the services of sevens star Byron Oketayot back, whose industry and power is important to their forward oriented game.
Tawfig Bagalana, Dennis Etwau, Tomusange Charles and Wako David will be important especially in the leadership roles as they rally their troops for what looks like the perfect opportunity to get another win and some more points to spring them out of the relegation zone.
Dam Water, Jinja – 4.00pm