Matoka the man to watch as Kenya’s Chipu confront Madagascar
The Kenya U-19 rugby national team also known as Chipu will seek to defend their Barthes Cup when they meet Madagascar in Sunday’s fixture at the Nyayo National Stadium.
Kenya’s utility back Matoka Matoka will be the man to watch as he leads the points scoring charts at the 2021 U20 Barthes Trophy after two rounds of action in Nairobi’s on 26th June and 3rd July respectively.
With a total of 90 points scored in the competition thus far, Matoka has 15 points coming off a one try, two conversions and two penalties.
Kenya who are the defending champions opened their U20 Barthes Trophy campaign with a huge 50-3 win over Senegal on Saturday 26 June 2021 and will be looking to replicate the same performance when they face Madagascar in the last fixture of this year’s tournament.
However, in a winner takes it all fixtures, Chipu will go to this match expecting to showcase their physicality and dominance against Madagascar in the scheduled fixture that could play out as a final fixture for both teams.
Other players looking to oust Matoka from the top scorer chart are Madagascar’s Salotra Lucas Rakotomalala and the Kenyan duo of William Opaka and Tyson Juma. The trio also collectively leads the top try scorer’s chart having scored two tries apiece.
The Kenya team however should be wary of Madagascar players namely Erica Bruno Randrianantenaina, Elson Gabriel Nomenjanahary Hasina, Francky Kefu Randriatiana and Alain Alexandre Randriafara who have had an impressive tournament and could be out to spoil the party for Chipu.
Chipu have been in camp for the past three weeks under the experienced technical bench led by KCB RFC head coach Curtis Olago and former Kenya international Peter Mutai who acts as the Team Manager.
Kenya will be using this tournament as preparation for next year’s Junior World Trophy while the final ranking will be determined after the game.
Initially, Barthes Cup was set to be held back in 2020 but postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic that led to the suspension of all sport related activities.
The Barthés Trophy is the only certified junior tournament in Africa with eight national U-20 teams battling it out for the silverware.
Chipu hosted the Barthes Cup competition in 2019 and went on to win and qualify for World Junior tournament held in Brazil – securing sixth position. The Barthes Cup tournament is used as a qualifier to the Junior World Rugby.
In 2020, Rugby Africa announced the successful bid for Kenya Rugby to host the U-20 Barthés Trophy, for the next three consecutive years.
Host nation Kenya are the reigning Barthes Cup champions after defeating Namibia 21-18 in the final in Nairobi in April last year.
All Kenya teams will be in action at the Nyayo National Stadium with Chipu taking on Madagascar in the 1.30 pm kick-off on Sunday before the national senior team tackles Zambia in a must win fixture at 4:00 pm.
Sunday 11 July
Kenya v Madagascar – 11.00 am (RAC Women)
Kenya U20 v Madagascar U20- 1.30pm (U20 Barthes Trophy)
Kenya v Zambia – 4.00pm (RAC)
No comments yet.