Kenya Harlequin Saturday will unleash international winger William Ambaka against Impala Saracens in a Kenya Cup rugby league match fondly known as the Ngong Road Derby at the Impala Sports Club.
It will be Ambaka’s first appearance in Kenya Cup this season as Quins coach Charles Cardovillis effects two changes to the squad that takes on the Sarries.
With Aluda Beda – who started on the left in Quins’ 47-3 win against Mean Machine last weekend – set to miss the duel, Iddi Kakai moves to the left while Ambaka slots in on the right.
Cardovillis has also brought in tight-head Paul Kioko with Melvin Thairu dropping to the bench as his Impala counterpart coach Frank Ndong makes four changes to the side that lost 20-16 to Mwamba last Saturday.
Loose-head Edgar Obino, second row Kevin Okeyo, eighth-man Paul Mutsami, and winger Vincent Mose take charge in place of Steve Juma, Edwin Gatungo, Steve Shammah and Bradley Ochieng’ respectively.
These two sides met at RFUEA last season with Impala ending Quins’ three-year dominance with a slim 10-8 win. The Sarries staged a repeat performance beating Quins this time around 34-18 in Kenya Cup play-off for the semi-finals.
Impala would lose 15-0 to Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) in the semi-finals as the bankers went on to retain Kenya Cup unbeaten, edging out Kabras Sugar 29-24 in the final.
Impala and Quins last meeting was at the Impala Floodlight quarterfinals where the Sarries won 20-15.
In other Kenya Cup matches, Mwamba travel to Kakamega where they have an arduous task of ending leaders Kabras Sugar’s unbeaten run at their own backyard. Kabras Sugar won 29-22 when the two sides met last year at the same venue.
Mwamba head coach Kevin Wambua has made several changes to the squad that stunned Impala. Hooker Salaton Muturi replaces Eugene Sudi with Edwin Machanje coming in for Stephen Wangondu. Martin
Oyugi takes the scrum-half position in place of Eugene Nzioka, who drops to the bench while centre Felix Otieno replaces Brad Owako.
Dan Sikuta, Felix Ayange and Joseph Odero, who played in Kabra Sugar’s 44-5 demolition of Nondies last weekend, have been rested for Ephraim Oduor, Charlton Mokua and Fabian Olando.
That will now see some tactical movement with George Nyambua starting at flank, Asuman Mugerwa at tight-head and Olando on the blind wing.
Champions KCB host Nakuru at the Nakuru Athletic Club while Homeboyz welcome Strathmore Leos at the Jamhuri Park showground.
Nondies hope to bounce back from Kabras’ defeat with a bonus point victory against Machine at the Impala Sports Club while Blak Blad and Menengai Oilers face-off at Kenyatta University.
FIXTURE (All matches start at 4pm unless otherwise stated)
Homeboyz v Strathmore Leos (Jamhuri Park)
Nondies v Mean Machine (Impala, 2pm)
Impala Saracens v Kenya Harlequin (Impala)
Kabras Sugar v Mwamba (Kakamega Showground)
Blak Blad v Menengai Oilers (Kenyatta University, 4pm).