PremiershipRugby

Five talking points from Kobs against Heathens

A game that pits Kobs against Heathens is bound to be not short of jaw-dropping incidents and here a few talking points as seen by me:

Full Match : Betway Kobs 26-21 Hima Cement Heathens 

1.Rugby is not dead

There was a time when the numbers at rugby clubs no longer made sense and were dwindling but now, the numbers are coming back. New faces are showing up at rugby games, and the old faces are staying. Who is to credit? No one to credit? At this juncture, I will thank the Kratos team for repairing the vocal chords of rugby and she can now speak on her own. Also, thank you for subscribing to KRATOS and watching the games broadcast live.

 

A full stand at Kyadondo, as Heathens took on Pirates.

2.Legends is not Kyadondo

The Heathens are a very comfortable side when playing at home(Kyadondo)  but of course, when playing away, the schematics do change a little bit. For every team, they do. Against Kobs, they did change a lot for Heathens. After having an iceman performance at the back and on the tee for Heathens against Pirates, not even Simon Okwera’s shadow showed up.  A week after punishing Pirates with two late penalties to win the game 18-15 for Heathens, Okwera missed nine kick-able points (3 conversions and a penalty), which would have mathematically won the game for Heathens had they been attained. What went wrong? The full back was/is not as used to the climate across from Kyadondo. His spirit animal probably responds to the aura oozed by the lower swamps of Kyadondo. The Kasemintists and Stoolers suggested in their second episode that the only way Heathens could be toppled was after the kidnap of Eddie Kiwanuka. It was evident last weekend, as Heathens succumbed to their first loss, and it is no coincidence that Eddie Kiwanuka was not in the stands shouting at the top of his vuvuzela, while wielding a Nile Special beer or two.

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Visibly, Eddie Kiwabuka absent at Heathens choir master’s pulpit.

 

3.Heathens really are a second half team

With all due respect, Hima Cement Heathens have no business taking part in any first half rugby. They have demonstrated to all and sundry that they are only going to re-arrange their marbles after the break, so, it would only make sense they take half time refreshments and then get on with the last 40 minutes or so of the game. After a measly 3 points in the opening period, the Kyadondo side erupted for 18 points against Kobs 6 points. A spirited fight from replacement back-rower Cox Muhigwa who registered a brace, and the agility of Paul Epillo are where the credits should be directed. It is not the first time they turn up late. It happened against Kobs in the first leg coming back to score 15 points in the second period after conceding 12 in the first. Unlike Pirates and Kobs that confirm their “Bonus Points” early in the game, the 2017 champions need the entire stretch of 80 minutes to confirm 5 game points.

Cox Muhigwa erupted for two tries for Heathens against Kobs from the bench

4. Pay attention to Ronald Kanyanya

Alex Mubiru has been a noble and long servant of Ugandan rugby but it is high time we all collectively called time on his club and country career. He too, knows this. With this in mind, the Heathens have molded a perfect replacement. Ruthless in defense, sublime in attack. Arguing about the latter? You may need to have a sit down with Pirates wingers Baron Kasozi and or Timothy Odongo and they narrate how the lad cut them out on the wing. In a family that keeps giving, it is needless to say that the mother is the famous “Mama Kanyanya” who has fed pangs of many with her cuisine across from Legends at Kyadondo.

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Ronald Kanyanya in action for Heathens against Pirates

5. Aredo Joseph! My oh my!

Social media is still in love with the utility back, 72 hours after the game. Had Kenya really robbed us of one of our brightest? Who in the Heathens camp really annoyed Aredo? Better still, has he been saving his best rugby for the real games? Do you remember him in that 25-13 win of Kobs against Pirates? He was good then, but too pristine this past weekend. Save for that early penalty miss, everything else was perfect from Kobs full back of the day. He kicked in 13 points, on top of piercing through Heathens defense line to create the first try. Heathens were potent in the fielding area in the hands of Epillo, Okwera and Masendi. Kobs had the same answer the entire time, Joseph Aredo. He did not knock any balls over. Anything in the air was his property. One aspect in the game that has always Joseph Aredo a place higher than his mates and competition is his defense. You can call it total disregard for opposition or just being good at it. Not many can stand in the way of Heathens, Michael Wokorach, skipper multiple times and live to tell the story. Aredo was all smiles at full time.

Betway Kobs Joseph Aredo (L) puts in a custom stop to Hima Cement Heathens captain Michael Wokorach in their recent meeting.

We can spend the whole week talking about various aspects in the game from the youthful center pairing in Kobs or the fact that Kimono, having been a menace at center, was transported back to the wing and did not even complete a single half of rugby, but those are talking points for another day.