It's difficult to fathom just how much natural talent Kenya's sevens players have. They are not full time professional rugby players, with some working in agriculture, TV production, public relations and medicine to name but a few professions. It's a highly qualified team off the pitch and on the pitch Kenya reached a new pinnacle in 2016 when they won their first ever world series tournament in Singapore.

Take Collins Injera for example. Working in PR at the time, Injera took time out from his day job to compete at the Hong Kong and Singapore rounds of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series last year. Alongside brother Humphrey Kayange, who was working late at Bristol University on his Masters in Organic Chemistry before heading out on the series last year, Injera lifted his country's first Cup and it was a special moment to savour.

"It was a very special win for us," said Injera. "I’ve been playing in the series for a long time now and this is my ninth year. I've had a lot of great memories with Humphrey so winning last year in Singapore was truly special for me personally. He has given a huge amount to the game and while he is not here this year, Kenyan rugby can be grateful for what he has achieved.

"Going into the tournament we were confident we could do well but having never won a tournament before, we had no expectations of that sort. To win on the world series, you have to beat six quality teams to take home the trophy so a lot of things have to go your way. For us, we just had that extra bit of motivation, we played as a team and would do anything for each other."


Beating Fiji in the final, a side who had just won in Hong Kong, was a stunning achievement. It was also the manner in which Kenya dismantled the Pacific islanders, playing at a pace even the quick-footed Fijians couldn't keep up with. The final score, 30-7, was Fiji's first Cup loss of the series and Injera's two tries were integral. But, that was not his biggest contribution in the tournament by a very long way.

To get into the final, Kenya had to play Santiago Gomez Cora's Argentina side in the Cup semi-final, a team bristling with talent and still reeling from a Cup final loss to South Africa earlier in the series in Cape Town. With time almost up on the clock the score stood at 12-12 and cometh the last minute chance to slot a drop goal, cometh the man. Stood on the 10-metre line, and slightly to the left, Injera boomed an aboslute monster of a drop goal through the humid Singapore Stadium air to clinch the win.


"If I remember well I had missed the conversion earlier in the match which was relatively easy. I talked to the captain Andrew (Amonde) and said let me have a shot. He looked at me and told me to go an have a shot at it. I just wanted to hit the ball as hard as I can and that’s what I did. I managed to get the technique right and the power."

More importantly, has Injera been practising this year?

"I am a kicker but I think we have better kickers in the team. I haven’t been practising kicking this year due to a niggly knee injury but if the time comes we will see."

Outside of kicking duties, try scoring will be on Injera's mind. In Hong Kong, England's Dan Norton waltzed into the record books after scoring his 245th try against South Korea in the pool stages, usurping Injera as the leading try-scorer in series history. Does it bother him?

"I'm obviously looking to take back that record but I can't let it affect the way I play," he said. "I am always looking to score but the team is the most important thing. If the record comes, then that's a bonus for me."

Kenya will play Australia, Argentina and Samoa in Pool C on Saturday.