Paul Munyuki Sports Reporter
NEWLY-formed XP Horns Rugby Club are aiming to maintain their unbeaten run in the Northern Region Under-21 league when they take on rivals Old Johannians at ZB Bank Sports Club this afternoon.
XP Horns is a team comprising mostly of former Old Johannians second-string players who have since parted ways with the club and are now based at Alex Sports Club.
And this is where their rivalry is drawn from as most of the players in the Crain Bonner-coached side are set to take on their former pay masters in the main game of the day.
It was in a friendly match against Mbare Academy – who will not be in action this afternoon as they are on tour in Zambia – that XP Horns suffered their only defeat but they are yet to lose in competitive rugby.
Team manager Jonathan “JayJay” Gumbo expects an explosive encounter and feels they have what it takes to get the better of their former paymasters given that they beat them in a pre-season friendly.
“I think given the fact that we came from Old Johannians, our game against them tomorrow is going to be an explosive encounter characterised by speed, talent and clinical play.
“We are more of a running team but at the same time our forwards work hard for the backliners to get a constant supply of the ball.
“No doubt it is going to be a difficult game, we have not lost a game so far this season and we are aiming to continue with an unbeaten run and the only way we can achieve that is by having good running lines and perfect defensive structure,” said Gumbo.
The larger amount of the players from XP Horns are still in school and Gumbo feels this is a good sign that Zimbabwe rugby is moving in the right direction in terms of development.
“Most of the boys in our teams are school boys dominated by Marlborough High, we are still at development stage and trying to gel as we work together.
“Some of the players are from Heritage, Kutama, Prince Edward and Churchill and have been working well with coach Craig Bonner who is doing a wonderful job at the club and the good thing about our club is that the lads are so willing to learn.”
Our second team is in Group B of the competition, second to Mbare Academy and we play Mufakose at 12pm.