Cheetahs still in the hunt

HARARE - An unconvincing Zimbabwe was able to finish the opening day of the Confederation of African Rugby (CAR) Sevens Africa Cup on a positive note by dismantling Ivory Coast 54-0.

Kilvan Magunje and Shayne Makombe were the chief destroys as they both scored a brace each while speedster Tafadzwa Chitokwindo, pint sized Stephen Hunduza and debutant Riaan O’Neil ran in a try piece to complete the rout.

The Cheetahs looked a bit sluggish in most of their early matches and their handling skills left a lot to be desired as a most passes did not stick or they struggled to gather.

In defence, the hosts were caught in no men’s land several times as they struggled to maintain a solid rearguard and were guilty of leaking soft tries.

In their opening match of the tournament, Zimbabwe were caught cod by a little known Nigeria in the rugby world, who breached the Cheetahs defence three times.

The hosts had to snatch the match right at the death through a moment of individual brilliance from veteran Fortunate Chiependu to secure a dramatic 26-19 win.

In the second match, Zimbabwe were once again exposed especially at kick-offs and restarts by an alert second string Kenya side with the Cheetahs players failing to gather areal balls.

Kenya made the most of the hosts’ weaknesses to claim a narrow 19-17 win.

In the third match, the Cheetahs were given a run for their money by East African giants Uganda, who pushed them all the but Gardner Nechironga provided the hosts with a get out of jail card with a try in the dying stages to secure a 19-12 win.

The 12-team tournament is being used as qualifier for the Hong Kong leg of the HSBC World Sevens Series.

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.