Kenya ran in five converted tries, and a penalty against Uganda’s four to win the second leg of the Elgon Cup and defend the crown, winning 72-38 on aggregate.
As fate would have it, Kenya drew first blood through winger Jacob Ojee in the corner. Darwin Mukidza converted for maximum points to give the Kenyans the 7-0 lead. Lest we forget, Ojee was the chief tormentor of Uganda when the two teams met in Kampala in May for the first leg of the Elgon Cup. Uganda were quick on the reply after a beautiful dummy by Ivan Magomu set up the quick feet of returning full back, Phillip Wokorach, to bring the visitors within breathing space of the Kenyans. He failed to convert his own try leaving the Kenyans with a slender 7-5 lead.
The rest of the half was an easy prowl for the Kenyans as they ran in three more tries through skipper Davis Chenge off a rolling maul, scrumhalf Samson Onsamu and debutante and Shujaa speedster Felix Ayange, who turned defense into attack by running with the ball from his own 5. Darwin Mukidza converted all the three tries to give the hosts a commanding 28-05 lead at the break.
Uganda returned in the second half with more impetus and after Darwin’s penalty for Kenya, the Ugandans were rewarded with a try next to the posts through fly half Ivan Magomu which Phillip Wokorach converted to bring the game to 31-12, still in favor of Kenya. Aaron Ofoiwroth would later kick to gain distance for Uganda, with the ball falling in Kimono’s way but he was taken down by Kenya’s defense. He handed the attacking duties to an oncoming Phillip Wokorach who released Michael Wokorach to score in the corner for Uganda’s third try. Magomu failed to convert and the Simbas remained in the lead, 31-17. The Cranes kept pressurizing and they would get a fourth try through Phillip Wokorach to bring the game within reach at 31-22.
The pressure kept coming from Uganda, with a lot of belief showing but handling errors gifted Kenya one more run, which found substitute Amusala in space to score Kenya’s fifth try and thwart any hopes of Uganda mounting a late upset, with Darwin Mukidza converting to end the game at 38-22 in Kenya’s favor.
That result, coupled with Kenya’s 34-16 victory in Kampala in May, the Simbas defended the Elgon Cup successfully with a 72-38 aggregate win.
“If you play a good team and allow them to get 31 points, it’s going to be a tough challenge. I am very proud of the boys for fighting their way back to the challenge, they stuck to the plan which I am very happy about,” said Uganda’s tactician John Duncan at full time.
Uganda’s next game is against Tunisia in Kampala on 4th August 2018.