Pressure on Kenya to deliver results
Memories of last year’s Wellington Sevens are still fresh in the minds of Kenyans as the national Sevens team goes up against Samoa, Australia and Tonga in the same tournament this weekend.
The team captained by Collins Injera-(pictured) exited the USA Sevens a fortnight ago on a low after being served humble pie in their 0-35 humiliating loss to Fiji in the Bowl final.
At the New Zealand IRB Circuit, Kenya will look for inspiration from last year’s performance where they bowed out to England 19-24 in the Main Cup final.
The teams were deadlocked 19-19 at full-time, but two yellow cards to captain Andrew Amonde and Oscar Ouma left the hard-tackling Kenyans with too much ground to cover, which Sam Edgerly took advantage of to end the high-flying side’s fairy tale run.
Kenya had beaten New Zealand 19-14 in sudden death in the semi-final, a result New Zealand player Lote Raikabula described as embarrassing. The New Zealanders are hoping to meet Kenya in the knockout stages to exact revenge.
A new era has dawned on the team, as former South Africa coach Paul Treu has since taken over Mike Friday’s post, and has been tasked with taking the team to the 2016 Olympics.
Redemption will be at the top of the players’ minds as they seek to better their Las Vegas performance. Treu has appealed for patience amid criticism from a section of fans, who have taken to social media to express their disappointment.
“As a team I always want to win, but my players need to grow at their own pace. That I can’t speed up,” Treu responded to one of the criticisms posed to him on Twitter.