Blog: Kabras dominates Kenya Cup team of the season
By Brian Msalame | Tue 10 May, 2016 07:52
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The new champions had a slow start into the competition before picking themselves up and getting the job done until the final match which saw them dominate a form Impala side that was branded the team to beat after securing top spot at the end of the league season. 

Therefore it is with no surprise that they also dominate my team of the season, occupying the lion's share with five players out of the fifteen that were chosen basing on merit and their exploits throughout the Kenya Cup season.

1. Hillary Mwanjilwa - Kabras

A hybrid loosehead who should be able to give the national team selectors a headache while considering starting options for the #1 jersey that also includes KCB's Moses Amusala in it, Mwanjilwa could make it count with his powerful scrummaging and all round play.

2. George Asin - KCB
There was much talk about him filling the void left in the KCB #2 jersey by Kenyan international Peter Karia who headed for South Africa as the season began. 

However, he has proved critics and the naysayers wrong by subsequently making his presence felt everytime he dons the green shirt for the bankers. Scored a superb 20-metre solo try punching across the nitty gritty Quins defence in the third place playoff match last weekend for what was his seventh try of the season. 

3. Duncan Mwangi - Kabras

Many will envy the Kabras forward pack this season having to deal with big sized intimidating players and heavy carries all over the field and Duncan Mwangi has shown that he can as well deliver when called upon. 

The tight head has been in impressive form for the sugar millers; almost impossible to stop and a huge nuisance to the opposition teams becoming a troublesome thorn in all facets of play.

4. Anthony Ogot - Kabras

The experienced lock is a dangerous un-nullify-able threat at the line out as well as very good in defending mauls, not to mention the huge threat he posesses most importantly with his ball carrying abilities aiding the Kabras style of play. His laborious work rate which keeps on getting better with age could be perhaps what sets him apart from the other second rows in the competition.

5. Simon Muniafu - Impala Saracens

The big lock has been impressive in all quarters around the Impala set piece and has embodied himself among the in form players in his position which should play a huge part in his cementing for a place in the national team for the upcoming tests alongside lineout maestro Oliver Mang'eni.

6. Tyson Okoth - Impala Saracens

For an academy player to rise up through the ranks and be able to mix it up with the big boys says a lot about the Kenya U19 captain's potential. His ability to play both at blindside and openside flank has proved to be a huge contribution into the Sarries set up this season. Closely edges out Kabras' Apenisa Natabua for the spot.

7. Peter Misango - Kenya Harlequins
In only his second Kenya Cup season with Harlequins, Misango has gone ahead to become a regular starter playing almost if not each and every game for the side. Has an eagle eye on the turnover ball adding it up with his constant breakdown skills terming him to become a potential worldclass fetcher. He ended the season with six tries. 

8. Max Adaka - Kabras

Had a huge responsibility resting on his shoulders as captain of the new champions in his debut season for the club but has instead used it as a motivating factor, racking up tries to become the league's top try scorer a season after he was named MVP while at KCB. 

9. Geoffrey Ominde - Nakuru

Plays with complete composure and confidence behind the bulgy Nakuru forwards and has since been the steering wheel of the Rift Valley side that has provided very little to talk about this season. 

With the team short of a much needed workforce after the club imposed bans on a few key players, Ominde has almost taken it as a solo task to push his team forward despite his audacious efforts suffering a blow in the 16-15 playoff defeat to eventual cup champions Kabras.

He ended the season with 147 points from four tries, 32 conversions and a record 20 penalties - six in the last season regular season game against KCB, and a drop goal. 

10. Nato Simiyu - Impala

An unusually gifted ball player whom many would consider as player of the season despite having a shocker in the final. His strategic ability to dictate play for the Saracens has seen them develop a skill full running game.

Possess deadly distribution skills that are made to count by Impala's explosive backs. Worth a mention on this front is Quins' Kevin Keegan.

Nato was Impala's second highest point scorer with 84 points gathered from 13 tries, five conversions, two penalties and a drop goal. 

11. Ian Minjire - Impala
The towering winger has been knocking down doors in the Impala team providing the much needed pace in the backline. 

His ability to cut across defences an head over for the tryline have made him to become a household name among rugby enthusiasts and it comes with no suprise that he has been rewarded with a national team call up.

Minjire ended the season with ten tries, that included a hat trick against Nondies in Week 16, and the most important one against KCB in the semis that ultimately ended the reign of the Champions. 

12. Patrice Agunda - Kenya Harlequins
A leader of men on the pitch who supplements his vast experience with powerful runs that cause havoc to opposition teams in the midfield. 

Likely to start at inside centre for the national team this year, Agunda has played a huge part in turning around the Quins team that was said to have lost its aura at the close of last season.

13. Fabian Olando - Kabras

In a new midfield partnership with fellow international Nick Barasa, Olando's first season with Kabras has been a striking success. 

Exhibits a wide range of skills - from his block wall defence to having a superb boot from the kicking tee that has immensely contributed in the triumph for his new club.

14. William Mawira - Kenya Harlequins

One of the leading lights of a very much improved Quins side. Has turned up in a majority of games played by Quins this season. He started the season with a steal of a try that saw Impala beaten at home 29-22 in the season opener.  

His fantastic finishing skills enabled him to bag a hat trick of tries against KCB in the third/fourth playoff last weekend becoming Quins' top try scorer with 18 touchdowns at the end of the Kenya Cup season.

The hat trick was his fourth of the season following on three others; against Blak Blad in Week 5 and twice against Bungoma Sharks in Week 14 and Week 17. 

15. Darwin Mukidza - KCB

An amazing attacking specimen and is among the few KCB players to have maintained his top class form in a season where the last season's champions have blown hot and cold throughout their entire Kenya Cup campaign. 

Darwin contains very acute skills with ball in hand, a deceptive run that leaves the opposition confused and a magnificent boot that has seen him collect the top point scorer's award this season after amassing a record 199 points from 14 tries, 32 conversions and 13 penalties - six that came in the 25-8 quarterfinal playoff win over Homeboyz.

Brian Msalame
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