Uganda Rugby Cranes defeated Kenya 16-13 away in Kisumu during the first leg of the Elgon Cup to place to put one hand on the trophy.
Uganda ran in two tries, one in each half, with Kenya Harlequins half-back Aaron Ofoywroth adding six points off his boot to give Uganda 16 points while Kenya scored two second half tries, and a Coulson penalty at half time totaling to 13 points.
Uganda’s and Kobs utlity back, who started as fullback set the tone rolling for the game when he crossed the white barely 5 minutes into the game to give Uganda a 5-0 early lead. Aaron Ofoywroth missed the resultant conversion but saved his blushes when he split the Kenya uprights with a drop goal to push Uganda to 8-0. Aaron was not yet done as he beautifully sent in a penalty to push Uganda to 11-00 as the clock ran out in the firt half. At the brink of half time Ronald Kanyanya saw yellow, with Chipu’s Dominic Coulson converting the resultant penalty to send Kenya trailing 3-11 into the break.
After the break, Uganda got the first score, this time through Hima Cement Heathens big boy Santos Wycliff Ssenteza, but as was the case in the first period. Aaron missed the extras. Kenya got in on the five-pointer action with substitute Griffin Musila going over for Kenya’s first try and his KCB mate Jeff Okwach also landing a try to make it 13-16. Just like Uganda, Kenya failed to convert both their tries. Uganda would hold on to win 16-13.
This was Uganda’s first win on Kenyan turf in six years, and Aaron Ofoywroth was named man of the match.
Before today, Uganda’s last visit to Kenya was tearful, ending in a 38-22 loss, and while Uganda had 8 debutantes today, only 7 Simbas who played the 2018 match made Coach Paul Odera’s squad.
Earlier in the day, Kenya Lionesses wiped the flow with Uganda lady Cranes scoring eight tries in the process to win the Elgon Cup, with Captain Orlando Philadephia scoring a hat-trick of tries to guide her team to a 44-13 win. Uganda pulled back 13 late points to help salvage some pride.
The return leg of the Elgon Cup shall be played on Saturday, 13th July 2019, hosted at Kyadondo Rugby Grounds.