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Kenya draws South Africa in Hamilton

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By AYUMBA AYODI
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Kenya Sevens will be eyeing their first main Cup quarterfinal appearance when they play series champions South Africa, France and Scotland at the Hamiltion Sevens on January 26-27, next year in New Zealand.

This pool looks favourable on paper but Kenya lost France in Dubai and South Africa, Scotland in Dubai and are yet to play fifth placed South Africa this season.

Head coach Paul Murunga will have to find a winning combination between his young charges and the returning big guns, if they will be available.

Kenya failed to win a match in Dubai, the first time since the London Sevens leg of the 2011/2012 season.

However, that draught ended in South Africa last weekend when they beat Zimbabwe 31-19 in the semi-final for 13th place before downing former World champions Wales 33-26 to finish 13th and collect three points.

Shujaa are now placed 14th in the 2018/2019 World Sevens Series with four points while their continental rivals South Africa are fifth with 29 points.

The Blitzbokke finished sixth in Dubai after losing to Fiji 24-19 in the play-off for sixth before winning bronze in South Africa, beating Dubai Sevens champions New Zealand 10-5 in the play-off for third.

Scotland are seventh with 20 points while France are 11th with 12 points. Scotland lost in the semi-final for fifth place both in Dubai and South Africa to South Africa 29-0 and Spain 12-7 respectively.

Just like Kenya France are yet to reach the main Cup quarterfinals, losing to Samoa 33-24 in Challenge. Trophy final in Dubai and to Samoa 31-7 in Challenge Trophy semi-final in South Africa.

New Zealand are second with 37 points followed by Fiji on 35 and England on 30.

Australia Sevens draw
Pool A: Fiji, Australia, Argentina, Wales.
Pool B: USA, England, Samoa, 16th team.
Pool C: South Africa, Scotland, France, #Kenya7s
Pool D: New Zealand, Spain, Canada, Japan.
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