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Bankers target unbeaten run after sealing semi-final play-off ticket

Kenya Cup defending champions KCB have guaranteed themselves a semi-finals play-off ticket after gaining an unassailable lead at the top of the standings following a 41-12 win over last year’s runners-ups Kabras Sugar at the weekend.

Kabras have 49 points, five ahead of second-placed Homeboyz, and can even afford to lose their final regular season match against Impala this weekend since they cannot be caught.

The bankers had Kenyan international Darwin Mukizda to thank as he contributed 21 points with KCB remaining unbeaten after 10 straight wins which have yielded nine bonus points.

After drawing first blood with a penalty, Mukidza converted three tries scored by Peter Karia, Nick Ongeri and Brian Nyikuli for a 24-0 half-time lead before he returned with 12 points off his converted try, a penalty and Felix Ojoo try-conversion in the second stanza.

Homeboyz meanwhile, maintained their second spot after recording their ninth win, a 123-11 thrashing of Mombasa at the Jamhuri grounds and they face Strathmore in their next match knowing they are already in the semi-final play-offs after avoiding the grueling quarter-final ties.

However, the chasing pack have no such luxuries as third-placed Impala, who have 39 points, lead Kabras in fourth by a solitary point while Kenya Harlequins, fifth on the log have 33 points.

Sixth-placed Strathmore occupy the final play-off position with 25 points but they are not safe as seventh-placed Nakuru are just three points behind and still have hopes of getting into the top six.

Nakuru will be in a do-or-die battle at the Railways grounds against hosts Mwamba (eighth on the table with 18 points) as their main rival Strathmore Leos host Homeboyz at Madaraka grounds.

“Wanyore” are hoping the deejays can spin to victory against the students coupled with a win at Mwamba for them to clinch the coveted slot. Things are also hotting up at the bottom of the table where basement side Mombasa and Kisii RFC are staring at relegation back to the KRU Championship from where they were promoted last year.

Kisii, second from bottom, had been hoping for a win against Harlequins to increase their survival chances last weekend but suffered a 43-17 loss with pointless Mombasa also staying winless after that thrashing by Homeboyz.

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