Credit: John Batanudde
  • Nile Special Rugby Premier League – Matchday 13 Fixture
  • 3 p.m.: Platinum Credit Heathens vs Kobs
  • Kyadondo Rugby Club

There is nothing new one can write about Heathens vs Kobs in Ugandan rugby. The two are Uganda’s most successful clubs in all competitions by a country mile, winning thirty of the thirty-two editions of the men’s premier league.

Many a time, teams in the business of winning have been accused of not playing the most entertaining matches. They always, somehow just get the job done. However, one should not make the mistake of assuming that their matches have been a snoozefest.

Kobs and Heathens, currently leading the standings in that order going into round 13, have played some beautiful rugby this season. Their encounter in the first round at Legends, despite being married by poor officiating, was such a cracker. The cherry on the cake was a clutch forty-metre drop goal in the last play by Aaron Ofoyrwoth for Heathens to win by 17-15.

The two play one of the most highly technical and tactical matches you will watch in Ugandan rugby. And because both squads are usually star-studded, there is a sprinkle of individual brilliance too.

This Saturday, however, both teams might be without some of their best players. It has been the case since round eight when the Uganda Men’s Sevens officially began training for the 2023 season but the conversation has been revived by the news of four of Kobs’ players leaving the country to play for East Africa RFC in the Hong Kong 10s. Key among them is current top scorer and frontrunner for Season MVP, Pius Ogena.

Ogena and his teammates will be back in the country by kickoff on Saturday having concluded the Hong Kong 10s. But regardless of who plays, Heathens vs Kobs remains the biggest rugby match in this country. This weekend’s early kickoff at Kyadondo is a must-watch.

Other Matchday 13 Fixtures:

It is only by coincidence that on the day Heathens and Kobs at the top of the table are meeting, Rhinos and Rams at the bottom will be playing against each other too. A win for either team in either tie will go a long way in delivering the title and/or surviving relegation at the end of the season.

Pirates host Jinja Hippos at Kings Park while Impis welcome Mongers to The Graveyard, Makerere. Win or lose, Impis and Mongers will not gain or drop places on the table but they will need positive results nonetheless.

Walukuba Barbarians will take on Buffaloes at the Abel Dhaira Memorial Stadium. One more win might be what they need to put some daylight between themselves and the relegation scrap.

Ernest Akorebirungi joined Kawowo Sports in July 2019 after one year as a student volunteer at the Makerere University Games Union. In his role as rugby correspondent, he offers unique insight and analysis...

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