The Kenya Simbas Lay in Wait For Namibia

This Sunday the Kenya Simbas will take on Namibia for the first time in three years with their previous meeting being in Windhoek when the hosts registered a 53-28 victory over The Simbas. For several years, these two have been the greatest rivals when it comes to African rugby with Namibia always emerging victorious.

They are both in South Africa for the Rugby Africa tournament that runs from 11th to 21st November at the Stellenbosch Academy of Sport. The Simbas head into this match on a backdrop of a very eye opening clash against the Carling Champions match.

This week the team has had three specialists Neil de Kock, Ernst Joubert and Johann Zeier join their sessions with Neil assisting in kicking while Ernst and Johann focused on the set pieces.

“We’ve pushed the boys very hard with three high intensity training sessions daily which start off with gym in the morning and two skills sessions.  Credit to the boys as they have recovered really well from the match in Pretoria on Saturday. What has really pleased me about these players is how hard they’re willing to work individually and as a team. The players have also responded to the specialists who have come for our sessions,” Paul Odera said.


“It’s been great working with the guys, I’ve particularly worked with the scrumhalves on their kicking strategies and I am looking forward to seeing them run out this Sunday,” said Neil.

Neil de Kock talking to the Backline during the training on 9th November

We are working with Kenya to see how we can offer advice and in the long term assist them in qualifying for the world cup. They are a group of talent players with great skills, so it’s just some little tweaks here and there and they’re good to go,” added Joubert.

“Ernst and I have been working with the forwards, with him focusing on the lineouts as I work on the scrums. It’s great to work with the Simbas and they are a good lot of players, we cannot wait to see how they go against Namibia this weekend and looking forward to being part of the journey as they seek their RWC 2023 qualification,” concluded Johann.

Neil, Ernst and Johann at the Simbas training session at Stellenbosch

Three players who had picked knocks during the match against the Carling Champions, Joshua Chisanga, Malcolm Onsando and Daniel Sikuta have recovered and are up for selection for this Sunday. With the inclusion of four additional players in the camp, the technical team will have the uphill task of selecting the match day 23 out of the total 33 players

The purpose of this tournament is to help teams prepare for the Rugby World Cup qualifiers set for next year. Zimbabwe and Brazil are also in Stellenbosch for the tournament as they are also seeking World Cup qualification.

The match will kick off at 5:00pm EAT.

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