Monday, June 9, 2008

Tale of two halves as Lions lose unbeaten record

Impala RFC ended the KCB Lions unbeaten run in the 2008 KRFU Kenya Cup with a stunning 32-20 come from behind victory at the Impala Club on Saturday 7th June 2008.

The Lions looked to have sealed the match when they led 20-0 a few minutes from interval off tries from Collins Kimani, Anthony "Junior" Ochino and John Ahenda and five points from the boot of Peter Mutai who kicked over one conversion and a penalty. Moses Kola's penalty in the dying minutes of the opening half brought the score to 20-3 at half time. Advantage KCB.

Second half saw the Lions attack, but Edwin Alubaka's casual pass was intercepted by Impala winger Dan Weku who raced fifty yards to touch down under the posts. Moses Kola's conversion saw the scores stand at 20-10. Impala were galvanized after this try and Bryan Nyikuli, Felix Makori and Stephen Oyaya were to add three more tries as the Lions wilted under massive Impala pressure. Kola added twelve points courtesy of two penalties and three conversions that condemned the Lions to their heaviest Kenya Cup defeat since August 2003 when they lost 31-3 to Kenya Harlequin in the semi final at the RFUEA grounds.

This was a schizophrenic performance from the Lions who played one half and failed to show up for the other half. All is not lost though. A loss at this point of the season should only serve to sharpen the Lions predatory instincts and get rid of the complacency that had been creeping in.


In the curtain raiser Eric Shirley Shield fixture at the same venue, the KCB Cubs overcame a kit delay and player lateness to beat Impala II 15-6 to preserve their unbeaten record and claim their fourth successive win in the ESS.

Michael Okun's try and Edwin Kiprono's penalty saw the Cubs lead 8-0 at the interval. Ronald Njoga added another try in the second half that Kiprono successfully converted to see the Lions lead 15-0 before Impala II cut back the deficit with two penalties.


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