Innocent Simiyu/photo/courtesy

Kenya 7s coach Simiyu seeks improved performance ahead of Madrid 7s second leg


Kenya Sevens coach Innocent Simiyu believes his team will perform better in the second leg of the Madrid 7s this weekend.

Simiyu’s men had a relatively successful outing last weekend, winning three matches in the Spanish capital before suffering back-to-back losses against Argentina, including a 21-14 defeat in the final.

Shujaa, who are using the event to prepare for the Tokyo Olympics, were handed a day off on Monday with Simiyu prioritizing recovery.

“Our plan is more about recovery. Our key target is to make sure the players have recovered a hundred per cent by Tuesday (today) evening so that we can start preparations for the next tournament,” Simiyu said.

“We believe the boys will recover and they’ll put in a better performance.”

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The coach rued his team’s errors in both defeats to Argentina who were the only unbeaten team in the round-robin event.

“Argentina played very well. They happened to convert their opportunities as compared to us. The key challenge for us against Argentina in the first match was that we didn’t adapt very well. They pressurized our first and second receiver and we ended up making errors which they converted to tries,” said Simiyu.

“One of the key things we were looking at in the final was to be able to adapt and play our game. We are happy that the boys did that but unfortunately we gave them a soft try due to the pressure of the defence and we also missed one try towards the end of the first half.”

“It just comes down to those small things so for us it’s about how to execute better going forward to the next weekend.”

Meanwhile, Shujaa’s women counterparts, the Kenya Lionesses, will also be out to improve on their showing last weekend after losing all their matches to finish last in their six-team competition.

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