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KENYA coach Jerome Paarwater yesterday named his final 22 for the rugby Africa Cup game against Zimbabwe — a largely unchanged side to the one that beat Portugal two weeks ago.

But his Zimbabwean counterpart says he is having a selection headache. Sables coach Cyprian “Supa” Mandenge yesterday stated that due to the high competition of places in the Sables camp, he was finding it difficult to come up with the final 23 that will take on Kenya at Prince Edward School on Saturday. With the Simbas expected in the country tomorrow, Zimbabwe Rugby Union director Brighton Chivandire yesterday told The Herald that they will announce the final squad tomorrow at a press conference.

“There is high competition for places in the team and it is not going to be easy to come up with the final team because there is a very fine line separating these players and that shows the quality of players we have,” said Mandenge.

However, the Old Hararians coach will be forced to make a decision and name his men tomorrow morning following a technical meeting with his assistant Nsikelelo “Sykes” Sibanda, Chivandire and his captain Denford Mutamangira.

But all is set for Kenya

Paarwater made only two changes to the side that brew a shocker over Portugal — a psychological aantage for the East Africans who are yet to beat Zimbabwe since July 2010.

Loose forwards, Lawrence Buyachi and Davis Chenge have been recalled to the Simbas and are the only changes to the team that rolled over the Europeans at the end of last month.

Duncan Mwangi misses out

Chenge ,23, from Kakamega’s Western Bulls, last donned national colours in July 2014, featuring during the 34-0 win over Madagascar in last year’s competition which doubled up as a RWC 2015 qualifier.

Kenya’s results not only had a positive vibe for them on the World Rugby rankings, as their win over Portugal lifted Zimbabwe one place up to 27 while the East Africans moved three places up into the top 30 to settle on 29. Portugal dropped five places to number 28.

Zimbabwe started the year ranked as the 26th best side in the world — their highest ever ranking — with Kenya on 31 and this means there will be a lot at stake on Saturday as world rankings will also come into play.

Kenya Final 22

Forwards: Moses Amusal, Samuel Warui,Curtis Lilako, Isaiah Nyariki, Peter Karia, Oliver Mang’eni, Ronnie Mwenesi, Michael Okombe, Brian Nyikuli (captain),Lawrence Buyachi, Joshua Chisanga, Davis Chenge.

Backs: Lyle Asiligwa, Robert Aringo, Isaac Adimo, Kelvin Omiyo, Fabian Olando, Jacob Ojee, Darwin Mukidza, Samuel Oliech, Dennis Muhanji, Vincent Mose,

Sables Squad

Forwards: Denford Mutamangira (captain), Tatenda Murwira, Farai Mudariki, Pieter Joubert, Lawrence Clemenson, Royal Mwale, Kudzai Muzorewa, Jan Ferreira, Martin Wolfenden, Sanele Sibanda, Biselele Tshamala, Tadiwa Parirenyatwa, Graeme Lawler, Andrew Rose, Fortune Chipendu, Kingsley Lang, Shingai Mpofu,

Backs: Charles Jiji, Taddy Whata, Tichafara Makwanya, Lenience Tambwera, Boyd Rouse, Riaan O’Neil, Steven Hunduza, Gardner Nechironga, Tafadzwa Chitokwindo, Tangai Nemadire, Lungile Tshuma, Malvern Maparura, Cleopas Makotose, Daniel Capsopolous, Kuda Chiwanza, Mclean Muhambi, Andrea Banda, Kelvin Magunje

Source : The Herald

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