Kenya seek perfect start to World Cup season in Dubai

Thursday November 30 2017

New Kenya Sevens captain Oscar Ayodi during a training session at the RFUEA grounds, Nairobi on November 24, 2017. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |

New Kenya Sevens captain Oscar Ayodi during a training session at the RFUEA grounds, Nairobi on November 24, 2017. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

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Kenya begin their 2017/2018 World Rugby Sevens Series campaign on Friday against Canada in the Dubai Sevens, the opening leg of the season.

Kenya, who are in Pool A, will take to the pitch at 9.30am against the Singapore champions at the Sevens Stadium, before clashing with Dubai and Series defending champions South African (1.36pm).

They will then wrap up day one matters against familiar neighbours Uganda at 6.31pm.

After finishing a disappointing 12th last season with a paltry 63 points, Shujaa will be hoping to make amends in the new campaign that will also see them compete at the Commonwealth Games due April 4 to 15 in Gold Coast, Australia and the World Cup Sevens from July 20 to 22 at AT&T Park, San Francisco, USA.

Kenya coach Innocent “Namcos” Simiyu will be under pressure to turn around the team’s fortunes after a disappointing first season, where they made only two Cup quarter-finals.

New captain Oscar Ayodi is eager to inspire the side to the high heights they have soared to before.

The Homeboyz centre replaced Andrew Amonde as captain with the KCB man expected to be out for at least four months after undergoing hernia surgery.

“We had the best pre-season as compared to last season where there was players strike over allowances and contracts,” said the 28-year-old Ayodi before the team left for Dubai on Monday.

Kenya Harlequins prop Herman Humwa is in line to make his debut.

Kenya’s Friday Fixtures

Canada v Kenya -9.30am

South Africa v Kenya – 1.36pm

Kenya v Uganda – 6.31pm

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