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Kenya U20 fail to match Netherland in World U20 Trophy

Kenya U20 (Chipu) scrum-half Patrick Wainaina in action against Netherlands. PHOTO/World Rugby
Kenya U20 (Chipu) scrum-half Patrick Wainaina in action against Netherlands. PHOTO/World Rugby

Kenya U20 Rugby struggled to match Netherland in the first half and lost 51-3 in the second World Rugby U20 Trophy 2024 at Hive Stadium

The Netherlands picked up where they left off against USA last Tuesday, and then some, to blow Kenya away inside 40 minutes on Sunday.

Kenya U20 back foot

It took the Dutch less than two minutes to open the scoring at Hive Stadium as scrum-half Niek Doornenbal skipped through a couple of tackles close to the line.

Full-back Ilan Vaasen converted but was wayward from the tee minutes later as he passed up the opportunity to add the extras to centre Kees de Bruin’s try.

Kenya U20 (Chipu) in action against Netherlands. PHOTO/World Rugby

Kenya U20 (Chipu) in action against Netherlands. PHOTO/World Rugby

The Netherlands continued to dominate proceedings and Vaasen stroked over a penalty in the 11th minute to stretch their lead to 15 points.

Kenya’s task became infinitely harder five minutes later as second row Clein Omukhulu was shown a yellow card for bringing down a driving maul illegally.

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The Dutch took advantage immediately, number eight Joris Smits coming up with the ball following a powerful lineout drive against their depleted opponents. Vaasen added an impressive touchline conversion.

James Olela got Kenya on the scoreboard with a penalty as the match ticked into its second quarter but it was a brief respite and second later Netherlands fly-half Tom Hijdra found Kit Temperley with a fine miss pass and the Dutch captain did the rest.

That score guaranteed the Netherlands a try bonus-point and they would breach the Kenyan line twice more before half time as Smits crossed for the second time at the back of a driving maul and prop Toine Obiang Nguema powered over from a penalty move.

The Dutch found things much tougher going after the break as Kenya dug in and it took them more than 22 minutes of the second half to add their seventh try.

Kenya U20 (Chipu) player in action against Netherlands. PHOTO/World Rugby

Kenya U20 (Chipu) player in action against Netherlands. PHOTO/World Rugby

An impressive counter attack just after the hour mark was given added impetus by some slick handling as Hijdra and Temperley combined to release Vaasen in the left corner.

The tournament debutants breached the 50-point mark in the 74th minute as replacement winger Flynn Baker produced an impressive finish on the opposite flank.

Vaasen missed both of his touchline conversions in the second half but it mattered little as the Dutch ran out comfortable 51-3 winners to maintain their hopes of reaching the final at the first attempt.

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