Tussle for Final Rugby Kenya Cup Playoff Slot Intensifies

By Kenya Rugby Union
Published March 1, 2018

Nairobi's Strathmore Leos Nakuru's Top Fry Nakuru are not only separated by three points but also face intriguing fixtures in their quest to secure final rugby slot. Photo by Denis Ekanusu.The quest for the last Kenya Cup playoff slot goes down to the wire with the last round of action in the competition’s league phase on March 3, 2018.

Focus is on sixth-placed Strathmore Leos (25 points) and seventh-placed Top Fry Nakuru (22 points) that are not only separated by three points but also face intriguing fixtures.

The Leos host Menengai Cream Homeboyz in Madaraka looking to beat them. Victory for the Leos will cement their sixth place besides seeing them return to the post-season for the first time since the 24-21 semifinal loss to KCB during the 2014/15 season.

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In the event that Strathmore Leos lose to semifinal chasing Homeboyz, they would need to accumulate two bonus points by scoring four tries and losing by seven or fewer points. This would give them 27 points, a tally that could be equalled by Nakuru in the event that they register a bonus point win away to their hosts Stanbic Mwamba at the Nairobi Railway Club. This would call for the calculators to be brought out.

A win of any kind for Nakuru and no points whatsoever for Strathmore will see Nakuru accumulate 26 points, one more than the Leos and in the process secure a return to the playoffs after missing out last season. A win for Mwamba against Nakuru hands Strathmore playoff qualification.

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Leaders and defending champions KCB host third-place Resolution Impala Saracens at the KCB Sports Club. KCB’s last Kenya Cup win over the Sarries came on December 12, 2014 when they won 22-3 at the RFUEA Ground and they will be out to finally get one over their visitors as they seek to close out the regular season on a perfect note and mount a platform for the playoffs with a successful league title defense in mind. The Sarries are also through to the playoffs and will definitely be out to take their A game to Ruaraka.

Nondescripts’ playoff ambitions evaporated after the 24-11 loss away to Top Fry Nakuru and their clash at home to the already qualified SportPesa Quins at the Jamhuri Park is just but a formality as is the dead rubber encounter pitting the already relegated duo of Resolution Kisii and Regional Logistics Mombasa at the Gusii Stadium in Kisii.

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Kenyatta University’s Blak Blad play at home to Kabras Sugar looking to sign off their season on a high while Kabras, vanquished 41-12 at KCB will certainly be out to use the fixture as a platform to breathe life and confidence into their campaign as we head towards the most important part of the Kenya Cup season, the playoffs.