Shujaa, the men’s rugby 7s team, and Lionesses, the women’s rugby 7s team, had a successful start to the 2024 Challenger Series in Dubai. Both teams won their opening matches on January 12th.
Shujaa had an impressive performance, defeating Mexico with a score of 41-0. Kevin Wekesa and Patrick Odongo each scored two tries, while Nygel Amaitsa, Vincent Onyala, and John Okoth contributed with a single try each. Amaitsa showcased his agility and footwork, scoring a try after a well-executed switch pass move. Odongo demonstrated his speed, scoring two more tries, and Okoth sealed the victory with another try. Shujaa’s co-captain stated that their approach for the next match against Uganda will be the same.
On the women’s side, the Kenya Lionesses faced a tougher challenge against China. China took the lead with an unconverted try, leading 5-0 at halftime. However, Grace Okulu scored and converted a try in the second half, giving the Lionesses a 7-5 lead. China responded and took a 12-7 lead after Liu Xiaoqian scored and Gu Yaoyao converted. The Lionesses showed resilience and fought back, with Stella Wafula and Judith Okumu scoring two tries to secure the victory.
Both teams will play their second matches on Friday.