JWRT day one: Pool A

(IRB.COM) Tuesday 21 April 2009
 
 JWRT day one: Pool A
Kenya's fans roared on their Under 20 side - Photo: Frankie Deges

Namibia and USA recorded wins over hosts Kenya and Cayman Islands respectively on the opening day of Pool A action at the IRB Junior World Rugby Trophy 2009 in Nairobi.

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FULL TIME: Kenya 17-22Namibia

Namibia's relentless second half pressure paid dividends in the dying minutes when wing Nathan Ockhuizen chased down his chip and regathered to run under the posts to seal a 22-17 comeback victory over Kenya.

The hosts had seemed set to cause the first upset of the IRB Junior World Rugby Trophy with Namibia having missed two penalties and been held up over the try line twice in quick succession as they trailed 17-15.

However Namibia's perseverance paid with Ockhuizen's score against the tiring Kenyans silencing the home crowd, who had greeted every tackle or attack by their team with huge cheers from the outset at the RFUEA Grounds.

Kenya had been the side to watch in the first half, their chip and chase philosophy keeping the crowd on the edge of their seats and producing two memorable tries from wing Collins Omae and flanker Joel Omer.

Only two points separated the sides at half time with Namibia's points all coming from fly half Mahco Prinsloo in the form of a penalty and a converted try, before Kenya stretched that advantage when Omae scored within minutes of the restart.

Russel van Wyk responded with a try just before the hour mark, but Prinsloo's missed conversion still meant Namibia trailed 17-10. Captain Robert Herridge and Prinsloo both missed contrasting penalties, but Namibia kept up the pressure and ultimately earned their reward.

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FULL TIME: Cayman Islands 15-64 USA

The Junior Eagles produced an impressive display of attacking rugby to get their campaign off to a winning start with a 64-15 defeat of a Cayman Islands side that refused to back down on their debut in an IRB international 15-a-side tournament at the Impala Ground.

USA were quickly out of the blocks with prop Aaron Jenkins opened the scoring in the third minute before wings Zach Test and Brett Thompson (2) crossed the try-line to make the scoreboard reflect their dominance.

Cayman Islands gradually found their feet in the Kenyan heat, but they could not stop a lively USA side from running in two more tries from their impressive captain Cameron Dolan and second row Ryan McTiernan to lead 40-0 at the break.

The match may have been beyond them, but Cayman Islands regrouped at half time and came out with renewed vigour and were rewarded when centre Robbie Cribb kicked their first points with a penalty.

They were unable to claim a first try due to a mix of a lost ball - which saw Test go almost the length of the field to score - and being beaten to the touchdown, but Cribb kept the scoreboard ticking over with penalties.

The Junior Eagles, though, rounded off an impressive victory with tries from full back Robert Johnson, replacement prop Zach Fenoglio and his front row colleague Nick Johnson.

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