Shujaa’s 2022 HSBC World Sevens Series season in brief

NAIROBI, Kenya, September 2 – After the full season return of the HSBC Sevens following the Covid-19 pandemic, the Kenya 7s team fell short of their goal, ending the campaign with a new head coach who will led to a 12th place finish in the 2021/22 term.

Starting the season under former international Innocent ‘Namcos’ Simiyu, Shujaa started with a Cup quarter-final in both Dubai legs before collapsing in Malaga in Spain where the side failed to scored just one point, then went on to pick up another. a point in Vancouver, leading to the coach’s dismissal after Game 6.

Next up was the appointment of Englishman Damian MacGrath who guided the team through to the end of the season, ending on a note of improvement after reaching their first cup quarters where the team lost to Australia 40-14 in the final leg of the season in Los Angeles.

– Billy joins the club of the century-

Kenya’s Billy Odhiambo drives through the Samoa defense during day two of the 2020 HSBC Los Angeles Sevens at Dignity Health Sports Park on March 1, 2020 in Los Angeles, USA. Photo credit: Mike Lee – KLC Photos for World Rugby

Despite a disappointing season, Kenya had some bright spots thanks to veteran Billy ‘The Kid’ Odhiambo scoring his 100th try for Kenya in the Sevens World Series to join Collins Injera (279), retired veteran Humphrey Kayange (159) and Willy Ambaka (132) in the club of the century.

Antony Omondi was Shujaa’s leading points scorer with 100 with 35 coming from conversions while crowd favorite Alvin ‘Buffa’ Otieno scored the most tries (12) as Herman Humwa finished second with 11 trials.

-Beginnings-

Alvin Otieno in action at last year’s Safari Sevens. PHOTO/Raymond Makhaya

This season saw Simiyu debut KCB RFC’s Kevin Wekesa and Mwamba’s Tony Omondi who are both doing well before adding the Homeboyz trio of Richel Wanjala, Zeden Marrow and Collins Shikoli as well as Nondescript’s Ben Salem in the 5th and 6th innings while McGrath gave Archadius Khwesa of Blak Blad his first call.

Kenya’s biggest defeat this season came in Sevilla, Spain at the hands of eventual champions Australia who beat Kenya 42-0 with the biggest victory in Los Angeles, USA, recording a 29-0 against United States.

Kenya’s best performance in the series came in the 2017-18 season when they finished with a whopping 104 points to finish fifth, coincidentally under the watchful eyes of Simiyu.

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The team now looks to the World Cup which will take place in South Africa on September 10-11.

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