Isaac Kinyera
  • Nile Stout Rugby Premier League – Matchday One game-in-hand
  • Result: Warriors 10-20 Hippos

Warriors’ search for their first point and win of the season continued with defeat against Jinja Hippos during the game-in-hand played on Friday afternoon at Kyadondo Rugby Grounds.

This match was initially scheduled for matchday one across Jinja Road at the former Kampala Rugby Club. It was then rescheduled for the mid-season bye-week during the Easter holiday.

Warriors were on the backfoot before the first whistle was blown as they could not make the required number of players fifteen minutes before kickoff. Captain Akera Komakech who had initially been listed as the 24th man was forced to play the first half to make the numbers. Komakech would later limp off at half time with what appeared to be a painful ankle injury.

However, even despite being a man down due to coach-player Gabriel Aredo’s yellow card in the fourth minute, Warriors were able to keep Jinja Hippos away from their try area.

Warriors had a couple of opportunities to put points on the board through Richard Kinyai but the usually reliable struggled to find his bearings in the first half. Hippos were able to split the uprights twice through captain Maxwell Ebonga to take a 06-00 lead into the break.

The match came to life in the second half with both teams aiming for the try. It was John Echeru’s individual brilliance that set up two tries for the visitors to gain control of the game.

However, a quick spell of two yellow cards to Echeru and James Okello gave the hosts a chance to pull off an upset in the last 7 minutes of the match,

Samuel Odinga crashed over for Warriors’ try to make it 20-10 but it was too late for them to complete the comeback or qualify for the losing bonus point.

Warriors thus stay at the bottom of the table with no point from four games and Hippos cement their stay in fourth place.

Ernest Akorebirungi is an amateur rugby player and a keen follower of local Ugandan rugby.

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