Namibia beats Kenya to retain Gold Cup

30 Jul 2017 11:50am
WINDHOEK, 30 JUL (NAMPA) – The Welwitschias retained the Africa Gold Cup following their 45-7 win over Kenya at the Hage Geingob Stadium in Windhoek on Saturday.
Playing in front of a capacity crowd in a match that was broadcast live on Kwese Spots Television, the Namibian rugby team were too good for their opponents, scoring seven tries and restricting Kenya to only one.
The home team started off brightly with man of the match and double try scorer David Philander proving he is a threat on the left wing.
Kenya’s number eight Davis Chenge showed great strength and speed in the ninth minute but good tackling prevented him from scoring the first try of the match.
Philander then used his speed to score the first try in the 14th minute, which was duly converted by fly half Cliven Loubser.
Four minutes later fullback Chrysander Botha scored the second try for Namibia and Loubser converted.
Kenya then improved their defensive game and restricted Namibia to a 14-nil score line at halftime.
The second half saw Namibia coming out of the blocks faster than their opponents, with Loubser scoring and converting the hosts’ third try three minutes after the restart.
Five minutes later, left centre JC Greyling crossed the try line, with Kenya finally getting on the scoreboard in the 52nd minute through loose-head prop Moses Amusala.
That try seemed to give the Kenyans an upper hand as Chenge started to trouble the Namibian front row with his strength and speed, but their momentum was killed by Philander who added his second try in the 57th minute.
Casper Viviers and Leslie Klim finished the scoring late in the game, with Theuns Kotze adding four points from the conversions.
Kenyan captain Wilson Kopondo lamented his team’s defensive frailties, saying they need to learn to play 80 minutes and improve on their attack.
Welwitschias coach Lyn Jones was full of praise for the team, saying the new format has helped new players integrate into the team as they prepare for the 2019 World Cup.
“The fact that we played together as a team for seven straight weekends and we got five wins from five matches means we have changed the dynamics within the team. We ticked all the boxes we set ourselves,” Jones said.
He said he was now looking forward to the nations’ qualifiers in 2018 in view of the 2019 Rugby World Cup, and expects teams like Senegal, Kenya and Zimbabwe to provide tougher competition.