Kevin Wambua reveals tactical secret behind Shujaa’s success in Spain

Tuesday, June 4th, 2024 17:14 | By
Kenya 7s team after beating Germany on Sunday, June 2, 2024. PHOTO/ @KevinMwema/X.

The men's national rugby 7s side, Shujaa head coach Kevin Wambua famously known as Bling as credited his side incredible outing in Madrid, Spain to sticking to the coaching script.

Speaking after landing at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) on Tuesday June 4, 2024, Wambua who took over the instruments of power from a British tactician Damian McGrath, noted that he rallied behind the boys to stay on the game despite any form of setback including yellow cards and trailing behind.

According to Wambua Shujaa's playing style was grounded on situational awareness.

Kenya 7s head coach Kevin Wambua. PHOTO/ @KenyaSevens/ X.

"We had our situational awareness whereby even if we trailed by two tries and even got a yellow card, we encouraged the boys to take care of the ball and the rest is history," Wambua stated.

Captain's influence

Wambua who was elevated from McGrath's deputy before taking over the leadership ranks at Shujaa, also credited co-captains Vincent Onyala and Anthony Omondi for guiding the young team that thrashed Germany 33-15 in their winner takes all playoff match in Madrid, Spain on Sunday, June 2, 2024.

"The leadership of my two captains was key and vital and they are the ones who helped bring the young boys perform. For us (coaches), it was just selling the vision but the brotherhood and belief came from the captains helped the young boys to deliver," Wambua further explained.

The win against the over-daring opponent assured Kenya 7s team a spot in the HSBC SVNS for 2025 season.

"It can only get better for me because I'm still learning and I'm just working hard to be better," Wambua further assured Kenyan supporters ahead of Kenya 7s return to HSBC SVNS.

Kenya 7s team posing after beating Germany on Sunday June 2, 2024. PHOTO/ @KenyaSevens/X.

Wambua was picked to lead the Kenyan team on August 4, 2023 following the departure of Damian McGrath. Louis Kisia was picked as the assistant coach while Steve Sewe was handed the team manager spot.

Their appointment was widely considered a gamble as Kenya was used to picking foreign coaches. However, the trio whose journey to success was brewed over 18 years of friendship, managed to guide the young team to the Paris Olympics and now back to the HSBC SVNS.

Roadshow in their honour

Wambua made the sentiments before joining the rest of the team for a roadshow to celebrate their stellar performance in Spain.

The roadshow was organised by the Ministry of Sports led by Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba. The convoy snaked through Airport, Nyayo Estate, Baraka, Jacaranda, Donholm, Jogoo Road, the Central Business District, Ngong Road and Kenya Rugby Union (KRU).

How they performed in Spain

In a do-or-die clash, the Kenyan side went ahead through Chris Umeh’s unconverted try before Tony Omondi converted Vincent Onyala’s try to give Shujaa a 7-5 lead.

Shujaa extended the lead to 10-7 after Nicholas Koch’s unconverted effort for Germany before Chrisant Ojwang, back from the sin bin, touched down to give Kevin Wambua’s charges a 12-10 lead at the interval.

George Ooro and Kevin Wekesa thereafter guided Kenya 7's to the much-awaited victory in Spain.

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