Month: June 2017

ELGON DERBY

Pack changes
Enter Mathias Ochwo and Cox Muhigwa
Dropped are Robert Aziku and Musa Muwonge albeit the latter will still travel with the squad.
The line out set piece was a constant headache without Marvin Odongo commanding. In the intervals involving his yellow card in the first half and his substitution in the second the lineout was a house in disarray. Fortunately the Kenyans seemed to fight the same lackadaisical mood. Mathias Ochwo brings his wealth of experience here to ease the burden on the number 8. We prayed in our first pre-game analysis that Charles Uhuru would step up and be the enforcer but the lack of such central aggression in the pack greatly showed( be an Etzebth if I may) . While he carried and offered support runs one may still understand why trench war veteran Ochwo Mateyo has been called in. The unexpected retirement announcement from the national team of John Wandicho has also compounded the coaching staff’s problems with regards to a forminable lock partnership.
The Cox discussion resurrects. More importantly what is to be decided is who will replace Scott 300 Olouch in that No.7 jersey which as per the last game showed is no mean feet when he eventually retires. And how do traditional bruisers Muwonge and Musajja fit in this debate. Is Bryan Asaba gurantteed. The debate is already rewarding because there is enough talent and competition for spots.
Line changes
Enter Kevin Makmot and Gerald Ssewankambo
Dropped are Aaron Ofoirwoth and Eric Mula.
We have been privy to the fact that Eric Mula who didnt get a second of game time in the first game has been left behind because he is understandly sitting his university semester finals. Or so we hope. Enter Gerald ” Kasoto” . kasoto divides public opinion. While some favour the defensive security he creates in that No.12 channel others are against his lack on intuition in attack. The line afortnight ago wasnt really explored. Magomu seemed to favour a territorial game and when at the Scrum down setpiece, there was no sane reason to stop Marvin Odongo from those magical no.8 picks. So our line sat back alot. We hope however Magomu will be more experimental with his line come saturday.
Aaron dropped. Unfortunately for this young man his NT debut was eclipsed by his own lapse in judgement resulting into a yellow card. We do hope he will later be recalled. Kevin Makmot’s return will bring calm to the partnership and more decisiveness in opposition 22 and hopefully ensure discpline at the break down.

Generally the team make up hasnt changed although we believe the inclusion of Cox and Mateyo is for the physicality on Saturday. Many critics and fans will be pleased with the Ivans retaining their starting positions and another chance to explore their running play. We hope the line will come out of its shell and Phillip Wokorach who many have been hasty to condemn will shake off the lacklustre performance of the last game. All in all from here at Akatimba we wish the team the best come Saturday.
You can catch the game on Kwese Sports which is now available on free to air decoders.

 

 

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RUGBY CRANES ; A penny for my thoughts. By R.K. 

Saturday the 10th of June happened and we all bore witness to what occurred. The coaching stuff won’t have as much pressure on them for now after the boys put up quite an impressive display with a collection of debutants and less experienced options chosen. Positives and negatives were both drawn. And as we look forward to the next step, the hindsight will be crucial in knowing where fine tuning should be done.
Thumbs Up ;
The forwards were up for the challenge, very industrious and enterprising in their efforts to get across the gain line, not to mention the huge shift put into defending the try line. The front row boasting of countless caps did its leadership role as expected and they scrummed to the letter. Kudos.
Charles Uhuru was a warrior on the day; carrying the ball fearlessly, defending boldly and his line out jumping proving immensely useful. His counterpart Robert Aziku was a little quieter but nonetheless got the job done considerably well, ensuring that he supported the ball carriers and provided an alternate option at the lineout.
The back row was most exceptional of the pack if not the whole team . Brian Asaba, Scot Oluoch and Marvin Odong played like they were proving a point. They looked for work harder than a newly recruited intern and that eventually paid off when Scot and Marvin combined for Uganda’s first try, Scot breaking the defence and Marvin finishing with expertly run support lines.
The back line was hot and cold on the occasion. I couldn’t help but cross my fingers hoping that they were “hot” rather than cold whenever they got the ball. Ivan Magomu and Kirabo were the puppeteers of the show, moving the ball around and keeping the structure going with their exciting fast ball movement that caught the Kenyans unaware, so much that Biko Adema had to be withdrawn because he failed to find answers to the pair’s questions. They also provided the much sought after X factor or what is usually termed as “thinking outside the box” ,evident when Magomu chipped over a defence rushing in anticipation of a pass and instead freeing James Odong to waltz to the ball scoring the simplest of tries. This display presented a new dawn; one possessing an exciting brand of rugby without neglecting the cores of intensity, organization and structure necessary to propel the team forward even when individual brilliance falters.
Thumbs down;
Of course we can’t ignore the numerous flaws. Normally reliable wonder kid Phillip Wokorach seemed to have had an uncharacteristically mediocre day, missing the kind of kicks he usually puts away eyes closed, decision making was also questionable like opting to take contact in the defensive 22 rather than boot for territory, an act that cost the team dearly and in exact juxtaposition kicking the ball away in the offensive 22 metre area in an attempt to chip and chase. We can’t blame him too much because brilliance comes from experiment, we just hope he wakes up in God’s favour next time round.
Ivan Magomu at number ten had a few decisional glitches himself; notably why he opted to pass to Phillip Wokorach when he had time to kick which led to Kenya’s first try. As the chief shot caller, he is answerable for choosing not to use the “get out of jail” card to boot Uganda to better territory and avoid the rampant Kenyan pressure.
Pius Ogena was a shadow of what was expected from him at inside centre. Anyone that has watched him play at blindside or open side for the cranes would have been appalled at his very quiet show. Defensively, it paid off but in attack the number 12 was a ghost, he often ran the decoy lines, something that we aren’t sure whom to attribute to. Could it have been his flyhalf or himself for not seizing the opportunity to exploit what was a natural mismatch of a flanker-cum-centre playing among backs. 
Michael Wokorach had a big game defensively too however that’s where the story ends, although he missed a few tackles which luckily enough weren’t costly. With ball in hand he failed to create gaps and release his fullback and wingers, his coordination with Lawrence Ssebuliba on the day was that of cats living with dogs. The chiselled winger was very pedestrian to say the least and his usual pace and industry was sorely missed in contrast to James Odong, a much smaller athlete that was enterprising despite the numbness of the outside centre.
The substitutions made were spineless, the group commonly referred to as finishers came on to the most negligible of impact bar some shows of effort from Cyrus Wathum, the rest displayed a dull and very forgettable show, one even conceded a yellow card having just come on which put the home team in a compromising situation. The coaches need to stress the importance of the term “Impact substitutions”.
The discipline at the breakdown was bordering on schoolboy naivety, the team got punished cheaply when it could have avoided. Losing out on the perfect chance to consolidate the lead and secure the win.
Where to? after the fall to Kenya;
Much as we love the Elgon cup, this year it plays second fiddle to the gold cup. Focus is on bigger fish this year like World cup qualification and winning the CAR tier 1A tournament, a challenge we last conquered in 2007. So fortunately, the loss to Kenya not being a gold cup match but Elgon cup first leg was a blessing in disguise.
From now, we don’t have the luxury to drop any more points, starting with the visit to Ngong that counts as Leg 2 of the Elgon cup but also as match day 1 of the gold cup, we have to rethink all strategies, reassemble and play for a common goal.
Our guess is that John Duncan and Robert Sseguya might play more of their chess game of “preservation and tinkering “, keeping the more experienced players for the bigger stage. We hope to see the return of Chris Lubanga Opa, Mathias Ochwo in the game against Kenya on the 24th of June, Kimono and Kevin Makmot could be among those back in contention for a starting berth. In addition to that, we hope for more daring calls; handing caps to the young and brave in some positions such as starting an actual number 12 in the next game, could we see the return of “Kasoto” Gerald Ssewankambo or a potential debut for Eric Mula??
The start of the gold cup comes thick and fast, tactics are a key factor that have to be tailored to suit the team soon. Get the forwards gaining the yards, the backs showing Ugandan flair at its best, reduction in penalties conceded and disciplined relentless defence. Playing the Ugandan way!!

RUGBY CRANES’ GALLANT DISPLAY HARD DONE BY DARWIN MUKIDZA SHOW By RK.

For all their efforts, the Rugby Cranes were undone by a series of possibly avoidable mistakes and discipline in terms of the penalties accrued at crucial periods. The new look Cranes side seemed to have been a master stroke by coaches John Duncan and Robert Sseguya who took the risk of handing a number of far less experienced players a go in one of Africa’s most thrilling derbies. 
An uncharacteristic lapse in judgement by Uganda’s fullback Phillip Wokorach losing the ball in Uganda’s own 22 metre zone helped put the Kenyans ahead along with a penalty from influential Kenya Captain Darwin Mukidza. 
With the Rugby cranes in the hot seat, halfbacks Ivan Kirabo and Magomu Ivan turned on the style with great distribution and sublime decision making from which Scot Oluoch combined with Marvin Odong for the latter to dot down bringing Uganda back in contention. Phillip Wokorach then rediscovered his kicking touch after a forgettable initial display acing two penalties that put Uganda ahead by a point.
From then on, it was all Uganda with the men from the pearl of Africa showing grit in the tackle and urgency around the breakdown forcing a string of turnovers. The home side found their rhythm under the command of debutant Ivan Kirabo and namesake Ivan Magomu who finally got his chance as the senior number 10, the pair controlled the game as if they had 100 caps a piece under their belts and testament to their influence came when Kirabo passed to Ivan Magomu who chipped over the on rushing Kenyan defence for chasing winger James Odong to gather and extend Uganda’s lead sending Legends rugby grounds into a series of deafening roars.
Whatever the Simbas were told at half time, their expression and hunger seemed to be from another world as they immediately took charge of the game and after a series of phases, the Kenyans exploited an overlap which eighth man Martin Owila took advantage of to score with the resulting conversion easily put in by Darwin Mukidza. 
From then on it was all about game management, a number of sub’s came on for the Simbas with clear instructions on getting the win at all costs, Biko Adema releaved of his work for the day with Isaac Adimo coming on to call the shots. Kenya looked a different side, resilient in defence to keep the knocking Ugandans out and executing their fielding game expertly. John Duncan issued a series of changes for Uganda but this wasn’t the lucky roll of the dices he hoped for as Aaron Ofoirwoth was given a yellow card having just come on giving Mukidza a chance to put Kenya ahead, one he gladly took and yet again more indiscipline gifted the Kenyans another penalty that had become routine for Mukidza at this point.
The return of Justin Kimono after over a year of injury rose the spirits of the home fans on seeing their talismanic finisher back in action but even he didn’t have the answers to this Kenyan side that had professionally rectified the errors of their first half. Just like that the Simbas so off the game until the final whistle taking yet another win from Kampala and further emphasizing their dominance in the Elgon cup.
Marvin Odong however deserves special mention for his Titanic of athleticism and brute as he bagged the man of the match accolade.

RUGBY CRANES’ PROBABLE LINE UP

UG

 

With a few days before the kick off to the Confederations of Africa (CAR) tier 1A round one games where the Rugby Cranes host the Simba’s from Kenya in a match that will double as the Elgon cup first leg. We have compiled what we speculate to be the starting line up come 4pm on the 10th of June. Here is an insight on our perceived Cranes line up come that day.

FRONT ROW
We don’t expect any changes in this department with Robert Sseguya and John Duncan expecting to go for a tried and tested trio to lead the pack from the front.

1. Asuman Mugerwa
2. Alex Mubiru
3. Brian Odong (cpt.)

SECOND ROW
Some of the biggest debates come in this area with many candidates in contention especially some considerable new boys like Mike Otto contesting with older guns like Charles Uhuru and Arthur Mpande. We also expect Byron Oketayot to be moved to this area where we feel he is better suited rather than the back row. We could also see Mathias Ochwo in the lock zone due to his experience and forwards versatility. Charles Uhuru’s expertise in the line out for Buffaloes and Kabras will give him an upper hand in selection.

4. Mathias Ochwo
5. Charles Uhuru

BACK ROW
After last year’s experiments in this position that fatally backfired, the more natural options are available this time round with the availability of Scot Oluoch, Mathias Ochwo, Marvin Odongo, Ronald Musajja, Brian Asaba, Cox Muhigwa as the most notable contenders although Marvin seems to have some nudging injuries that continue to bother him but his array of skills with ball in hand, lineout and defence make him a sure pick. Our choices here would be…..

6. Brian Asaba
7. Scot Oluoch
8. Marvin Odongo

HALFBACKS
Here is another position of interest to keep the coaches sleepless. With James Ijongat pulling out, do they go for experience in Chris Lubanga Opa whose basic play has marshalled their successes in the previous tier 1B and 1A campaigns or will they opt for the more enterprising youth running rugby style of Ivan Magomu…..

For the scrumhalves, the battle is among heathen’s Ofoirwoth , Kabras’ Kirabo Ivan , Rhino’s Kevin Makmot and Buffaloes Paul Epilo. In all honesty, the contest is truly between Kevin Makmot who is the senior number 9 in the squad possessing a potent boot with experience at this level and Ivan Kirabo from Kabras for his surprisingly daring style for a very young man and his knowledge playing among the Kenyans.
Our picks however…..

9. Kevin Makmot
10. Chris Lubanga Opa

MIDFIELD / CENTRE
Another position that has brought so much headache for the coaching staff is inside centre whose usual incumbent Oscar Kalyango is out with a long term injury. Originally selected options Eric Mula and Ssewankanbo Gerald have proven to be lacking in some areas that the coaches require, our guess would be Eric Mula not considered to be defensively sound in a position that has high traffic whereas Gerald Ssewankanbo’s attacking frailties have led the coaches to call up back row Pius Ogena as option at inside centre for his good defence ,noticeable pace and sevens experience.

At outside centre, this isn’t a big contest with young Ian Munyani not being able to match the array of skills Michael Wokorach possesses, however this is a great learning field for him. The challenge will come if Michael Wokorach needs a potent replacereplacement, will the young stud be able to fit the vacancy of the number 13 shirt.

12. Pius Ogena
13. Michael Wokorach

Back Three
With the abscence of Joseph Aredo and Lawrence Ssebuliba having trained less than expected, selection for the wings will be interesting and we expect form to prevail in choosing. Fullback is a no brainer in Phillip Wokorach.

11. James Odong
14. Lawrence Ssebuliba
15. Phillip Wokorach

f of the Confederations of Africa (CAR) tier 1A round one games where the Rugby Cranes host the Simba’s from Kenya in a match that will double as the Elgon cup first leg. We have compiled what we speculate to be the starting line up come 4pm on the 10th of June. Here is an insight on our perceived Cranes line up come that day.

FRONT ROW
We don’t expect any changes in this department with Robert Sseguya and John Duncan expecting to go for a tried and tested trio to lead the pack from the front.

1. Asuman Mugerwa
2. Alex Mubiru
3. Brian Odong (cpt.)

SECOND ROW
Some of the biggest debates come in this area with many candidates in contention especially some considerable new boys like Mike Otto contesting with older guns like Charles Uhuru and Arthur Mpande. We also expect Byron Oketayot to be moved to this area where we feel he is better suited rather than the back row. We could also see Mathias Ochwo in the lock zone due to his experience and forwards versatility. Charles Uhuru’s expertise in the line out for Buffaloes and Kabras will give him an upper hand in selection.

4. Mathias Ochwo
5. Charles Uhuru

BACK ROW
After last year’s experiments in this position that fatally backfired, the more natural options are available this time round with the availability of Scot Oluoch, Mathias Ochwo, Marvin Odongo, Ronald Musajja, Brian Asaba, Cox Muhigwa as the most notable contenders although Marvin seems to have some nudging injuries that continue to bother him but his array of skills with ball in hand, lineout and defence make him a sure pick. Our choices here would be…..

6. Brian Asaba
7. Scot Oluoch
8. Marvin Odongo

HALFBACKS
Here is another position of interest to keep the coaches sleepless. With James Ijongat pulling out, do they go for experience in Chris Lubanga Opa whose basic play has marshalled their successes in the previous tier 1B and 1A campaigns or will they opt for the more enterprising youth running rugby style of Ivan Magomu…..

For the scrumhalves, the battle is among heathen’s Ofoirwoth , Kabras’ Kirabo Ivan , Rhino’s Kevin Makmot and Buffaloes Paul Epilo. In all honesty, the contest is truly between Kevin Makmot who is the senior number 9 in the squad possessing a potent boot with experience at this level and Ivan Kirabo from Kabras for his surprisingly daring style for a very young man and his knowledge playing among the Kenyans.
Our picks however…..

9. Kevin Makmot
10. Chris Lubanga Opa

MIDFIELD / CENTRE
Another position that has brought so much headache for the coaching staff is inside centre whose usual incumbent Oscar Kalyango is out with a long term injury. Originally selected options Eric Mula and Ssewankanbo Gerald have proven to be lacking in some areas that the coaches require, our guess would be Eric Mula not considered to be defensively sound in a position that has high traffic whereas Gerald Ssewankanbo’s attacking frailties have led the coaches to call up back row Pius Ogena as option at inside centre for his good defence ,noticeable pace and sevens experience.

At outside centre, this isn’t a big contest with young Ian Munyani not being able to match the array of skills Michael Wokorach possesses, however this is a great learning field for him. The challenge will come if Michael Wokorach needs a potent replacereplacement, will the young stud be able to fit the vacancy of the number 13 shirt.

12. Pius Ogena
13. Michael Wokorach

Back Three
With the abscence of Joseph Aredo and Lawrence Ssebuliba having trained less than expected, selection for the wings will be interesting and we expect form to prevail in choosing. Fullback is a no brainer in Phillip Wokorach.

11. James Odong
14. Lawrence Ssebuliba
15. Phillip Wokorach

Why Sadam juma won’t play- By Magero Moses

KCCA FC completed Sadam Juma’s move from Express FC early this month with the hope that the creative midfielder adds more firepower to the club’s armory ahead of the CAF Champions’ league group phase.

However, the midfielder was ineligible for the opening loss against FUS Rabat in Morocco because CAF had not yet processed his registration.

KCCA FC pushed to see that he is registered before facing Tunisia’s Club Africain on Tuesday at Lugogo but were dealt a setback after the continental body communicated that Sadam is not eligible to play for the club.

-It’s unfortunate that we are not able to use him. We didn’t have proper clarity before engaging in the process, Mutebi told journalists on Monday.

– We thought that after being released by Express, he would be legible to play in the Champions league but when we consulted Caf, it was found out that he could only feature when the local transfer window opens.

The local transfer opens on June 1st, meaning the midfielder will be able to feature in the remaining four group games.
End.