In a reversal of fixtures from last year’s pairing, defending champions Black Pirates find themselves facing Toyota Buffaloes while Heathens and Kobs in the other semifinal have set up an old school Ugandan rugby clash of long term nemeses, in a weekend that sees Kyadondo’s best take on Legends’ best teams.
Pirates had to withstand a brutal encounter with Warriors to win 18-13 last week while Buffaloes dominated Rhinos from kick off, winning 26-15. Just like Pirates, Kobs left Entebbe bruised after scraping out a narrow 18-16 win thanks to a late penalty while Heathens eased past Rams 27-03.
Pirates will be welcoming back at least 3 starters in Desire Ayera, Haruna Muhammad, Timothy Kisiga and Isaac Massa for their encounter with Buffaloes. Desire Ayera has been on extended rest while he sorts out his academics while the other 3 were part of the team that claimed third in the recently concluded Men’s Africa 7s.
After many of their players switched to Heathens, the world thought nothing much of Toyota Buffaloes but the Kyadondo boys have proven strong and are still going strong, raring to take on Pirates with new found mettle and spirit. Buffaloes will be looking to improve on that 3-0 loss to Hima Cement Heathens in the 2017 semifinals.
In the first fixture,Betway Kobs entertain 2016 Uganda Cup champions, Hima Cement Heathens. Betway Kobs will be glad to collect the reinforcements that are coming with Ian Munyani, Adrian Kasito and Justin Kimono. The three lads were part of the Uganda contingent that stung Madagascar at the death to claim third place in Tunisia last Sunday. Kobs suffered a last minute penalty against Pirates in last year’s semifinals to painfully exit the competition they last won in 2012, and will be looking to change that fate.
Hima Cement Heathens, who have won the title the most (11 times) will be looking to make another final appearance and possibly reclaim the title they lost to Pirates last year. They have done a lot of business in the market, and will look to recover from a forgettable 2017-2018 season which saw them fail in 15s and 7s. The Heathens will be glad to welcome back their skipper, Michael Wokorach who also captained the 7s Cranes while in Tunisia.