Mwanja pleased with Lionesses’ progress despite Dubai Challenger final defeat to China

Photo credit || Raymond Makhaya

RUGBY Mwanja pleased with Lionesses’ progress despite Dubai Challenger final defeat to China

Mark Kinyanjui 15:05 - 15.01.2024

Kenya Lionesses coach Dennis Mwanja is drawing positives from his team's performance at the Dubai Challenger Series where they lost in the final

Kenya Lionesses coach Dennis Mwanja is happy with the progress his side is making despite losing the final of the Dubai Challenger Series to China 19-5 on Sunday.

Like Shujaa, the Lionesses are also looking for a ticket back to the top of World Rugby and are second in the Challenger Series with 18 points, with three more legs of the season left to play.

Speaking after the loss to China in the final, Mwanja revealed that, although he was unhappy with how slow his side started, he was nonetheless happy with the fact they had managed to pick up momentum to get to the final.

“Yes, they started (by) scoring and we started the game slow but we started a bit too late to get back in the game but we are happy about the progress of the team,”  said Mwanja.

“Sevens is very quick, unforgiving, so they took their chances, they scored early. We were not proactive, we were reactive, so trying to catch up sometimes, it can be a little too late.”

Mwanja has also blamed injuries as part of the reason they may have failed to beat China in the final.

“Also, it could pay to the injuries we had and it cost us because our players were not at 100 percent.

“Nevertheless, it is just part of every tournament, so how we work around it is what matters, it determines the winner and the loser.

“Our final game is very different from the preliminary games, so you could not count from having beaten them in the preliminaries to peg our hopes on beating them in the finals.”

The former Shujaa captain has, however, revealed that the side will go back to the drawing board in order to try and see how they can rectify their shortcomings in order to make it up next time.

“We look at our positives and go and correct on our  weak points as we look forward to the remaining legs of the challenger series.”

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