Top of the table clash as Kobs visit Heathens in Nile Special Rugby League

Kobs' players tryto stop Heathens Scot Oluoch (M) at Lengends in the first round | Bata Images

RUGBY Top of the table clash as Kobs visit Heathens in Nile Special Rugby League

Ndyamuhaki J Emanzi 19:02 - 31.03.2023

Nile Special Rugby Premier League log leaders Kobs must do something they have yet to do in close to a decade to maintain their status.

Brian Makalama's charges have not won a game against Heathens at Kyadondo since 2014 and will hope to put a stop to that.

"It is just another game," Kobs head coach Brian Makalama told Pulse Sports when asked about the magnitude of the clash.

The two sides are neck-to-neck in the title race, with Kobs (55) on top of the log, one point ahead of their rivals Heathens (54).

The team that takes the day on Saturday will have taken a giant step towards the finish line, and Heathens will go into the game as slight favourites because of their home record.


Makalama got the right response from his side after that dramatic 17-15 loss to the defending champions.

The Blue Army have won nine in a row since that defeat and got a big 30-25 victory over Stanbic Black Pirates to ascend to the top.

Two bonus-point victories over Jinja Hippos are some of the stand-out results Kobs have recorded between that loss at Legends and Saturday's encounter.

However, one of the players who have led Kobs charge this season will miss the action.

Eighth-man Pius Ogena Pius Ogena, the team's – and league's top try scorer is one of three Kobs players set to miss the game after flying out as part of East Africa RFC for the Hong Kong 10s tournament.

Faragi Odugo and Jude Jjuuko are the other key players missing on the Kobs' team.

In Ogena's absence, Makalama has called on the services of Alhajji Manano.

The utility player will be part of a back row featuring Byron Oketayot and Derrick Tukwasibwe.

All Kobs' points in the reverse fixture were scored off Joseph Aredo's boot.


Heathens head coach Muhammad Athiyo has named a team full of experience for the biggest game in Ugandan rugby.

The half-back pairing of Faisal Gamma and Chris Lubanga needs no reminder of the task at hand.

Hooker Cyrus Wathum, Scot Oluoch and Lawrence Sebuliba are the other seasoned campaigners set to start.

Heathens' record against Kobs at Kyadondo suggests they will be the team to beat in front of the home crowd.

Heathens line up: Santos Ssenteza, Cyrus Wathum, Peter Bisaso, Simon Olet, Akera Komakech, Joachim Chisano, Scot Oluoch, Shadon Munoko, Faisal Gamma, Chris Lubanga, Lawrence Sebuliba, Trevor Ochan, Innocent Gwokto, Claude Otema, Joseph Oyet

Substitutes: Herbert Chanpara, Victor Wango, Gideon Kaihura, Shawn Baseka, Aziz Khan, Michael Amolo, Steven Kalema, Nicholas Kato

Kobs line-up: Saul Kivumbi, Trevor Maina, Collins Kimbowa, Michael Otto, Emmanuel Ecodu, Derrick Tukwasibwe, Byron Oketayot, Alhajji Manano, Robert Masendi, James Ijongat, Daudi Semwami, Justin Kimono, Joseph Aredo, Lawrence Wakabi, Josiah Sempeke

Substitutes: Felix Kyewalabye, Wilobo Mukili, Blair Ayebazibwe, Robert Aziku, Aaron Jurua, Davis Kyewalabye, Mark Osuna, Conrad Mukwaya

Nile Special Rugby Premiership

Saturday fixtures

Heathens vs Kobs - 3 pm

Impis vs Mongers - 4 pm

Rhinos vs Rams - 4 pm

Pirates vs Hippos - 4 pm

Walukuba vs Buffaloes - 4 pm