The 8th edition of the Bamburi Rugby Super Series kicked off with three fixtures at two venues on Saturday 24th April 2010. Depending on your mindset, the matches were either try festivals or lopsided. A quick look at match day one results
SDV Transami Cheetahs 52 Lions 17
UAP Rhinos 61 Mumias Sugar Buffaloes 0
Bank M Twigas 3 Nguvu Sharks 79
The delayed match day one fixture played on Tuesday saw Ugandan sides Rwenzori and Victoria pitted against each other in Kampala, Victoria stealing a narrow 16-13 result .
Weekend fixtures Saturday 1st May 2010
1. Mumias Sugar Buffaloes v Victoria (Pool B)
Venue: Mumias Sports Complex, Mumias
Kick off : 2.00pm
Match day two is a particularly special day for the Bamburi Rugby Super Series. For the first time ever, a high profile rugby match will be played in the Western Kenya town of Mumias when home side Mumias Sugar Buffaloes play host to the visiting Victoria from Uganda in a pool B fixture.
The 2010 BRSS is for all intents and purposes an educational tournament for the reconstituted Buffaloes who were on the receiving end of that 61-0 defeat at the hands of defending champions UAP Rhinos on match day one. You cannot fault many a rugby pundit who says that this will be an exercise in damage control on the part of the Buffaloes when they step on to the Mumias Sports Complex turf to take on a Victoria side that will be keen to keep unbeaten record and boost their semi final hopes alive with a comprehensive away victory.
2. Nguvu Sharks v Lions (Pool A)
Venue: RFUEA Grounds, Nairobi
Kick off: 4.00pm (live on Supersport and K24)
The second fixture on the day pits two sides with contrasting fortunes on match day one. The common denominator between these two sides was the number 52.The Nguvu Sharks plundered 52 unanswered points in a second half onslaught that saw them emerge 79-3 winners over home side Bank M Twigas at Arusha's Friedkin Recreational Center. The Lions , champions in 2008 conceded 52 points as they succumbed to their heaviest ever Super Series loss, a 17-52 result at the hands of the SDV Transami Cheetahs in the battle of the cats.
The Nguvu Sharks, a combined Kenya Universities franchise have speed and agility, two factors that make them very dangerous customers. That they ended their fixture against the Twigas on a high, scoring 52 points in the second half, should send shivers down the spines of their opponents, the Lions. Mitch Ocholla's charges have some useful ball players in the form of Biko Adema, George Odipo,Wilson K'Opondo and Joel Omer, men who have graced the highest stage for club and country. How these players gel with the likes of Felix Ayange, Kenny Andola, Mike Wanjala and Fidel Sinei will be key in keeping the Sharks' interest in this tournament alive.
Howard Okwembah's Lions need no reminder of their Houdini act last weekend when they started brightly, disappeared before coming back with a flourish. Team captain Edwin Alubaka must rally his troops out of the sticky situation they found themselves in at the end of match day one.This pride of Lions must redeem their pride, failure to do so will see them fail to make the knock out stages for the second successive time since that emphatic maiden victory in 2008.
Barring any mishaps, Houdini acts or any unfortunate incidents such as somebody shooting themselves in the foot, or staring down the open jaws of a crocodile,this match has all the ingredients of a thriller…that is if both sides stick to the script.
3. Bank M Twigas v SDV Transami Cheetahs (Pool A)
Venue: Friedkin Recreational Center, Arusha
Kick off: 4.30pm
Nobody likes losing, nobody likes losing heavily, the Bank M Twigas do not want to lose heavily twice. That 3-79 defeat on match day one is something that the home boys want erased from their memories quickly. Trouble is…they face the SDV Transami Cheetahs who were rampant in that 52-17 result over the highly rated Lions. A win for the Cheetahs all but secures their place in the semi finals while a loss for the Twigas sees them knocked out of the tournament.
4. Rwenzori v UAP Rhinos (Pool B)
Venue: Kampala RUFC, Kampala
Kick off: 5.00pm
Rwenzori were BRSS semi finalists at the first time of asking in 2009. They began their 2010 campaign on a sour note, going down 13-16 to compatriots Victoria in the Ugandan derby played on Tuesday. A second loss on Saturday complicates their chances of making it to the knock out stages. How will the likes of Scott Oluoch, Robert Sseguya, John Musoke, Denis Etuket and company cope against defending champions UAP Rhinos who despite resting key players still ran off 61-0 winners over the Mumias Sugar Buffaloes.
This should be a closely contested duel.
PS. History was made last weekend when the video referee( Television Match Official) had to be called in to determine whether UAP Rhinos Richmond Baraza had grounded the ball....just thought you should know...Enjoy the weekend fixtures
Tournament Media Manager
Bamburi Rugby Super Series 2010
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