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With the curtains coming down on the Lionesses outing at the Women’s Sevens World Series qualifier in Hong Kong, Head Coach Kevin Wambua had the chance to sum up his team’s day two performance after exiting the competition following a 12-7 sudden death semifinal loss to continental rivals South Africa.

“The game against South Africa didn’t go our way from the start. We were under pressure deep in our half during the first couple of minutes and they made us work hard on defense. I think we got into the game well as it progressed and the girls grew in confidence.  Rachel Mbogo’s yellow card was one of those 50/50 calls and we were unlucky to be on the wrong side of the referees call. Overall, the performance by the team was superb, though we didn’t win it, we went a step further from last year and picked plenty of positives and experience which will be vital for us as we head into the Commonwealth Games next week.”

Janet Owino kicks for goal during the 17-12 win over Argentina at the Women’s Sevens World Series qualifier in Hong Kong on Friday 6 April 2018/Photo/Jan Perlich/Ministry of Rugby

The team had earlier posted a 17-12 sudden death win over Argentina in the quarterfinal and Wambua said, “The fixture against Argentina was a bit nervy, our opponents came to play and rattled us early on. We had to stay composed and dig deep for the win but it came at a cost as we were unlucky to lose one of our seasoned players, Janet Owino to an ankle fracture.”

Up next for the Lionesses is the Commonwealth Games rugby sevens competition on 13-14 April in Gold Coast, Australia where they face New Zealand, Canada and South Africa in Pool A.  Sharing his thoughts on the task at hand, Wambua said, “It is a tough pool on paper but we will leave Hong Kong with a lot of experience and hunger and definitely go there to compete.”

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