Kenya Breweries RFC
The history of Kenya Commercial Bank Rugby Football Club cannot be told without that of Kenya Breweries Rugby Football Club, its forerunner. Kenya Breweries RFC was formed in 1983 when a few employees of the parent company Kenya Breweries Limited (KBL) who had played rugby for other clubs felt the need to start their own insitutional side. Among the pioneer players were flanker Justus Mugaa M’mpwii who had featured for Mean Machine RFC and Mwamba RFC and the first captain D. Maina who had featured for Impala RFC at fly half.
The first training sessions took place in August 1983 at the Jamhuri High School in Nairobi. Significantly, many KBL employees who had never played the game before enthusiastically signed up to play for the team.
Kenya Breweries RFC played their first ever match, a friendly against Barclays Bank RFC at the RFUEA in October of the same year and made their first competitive appearance at the Jamhuri Sevens in December.
1984 saw the team join the Eric Shirley Shield, the Kenyan second division league earning promotion to the first division Kenya Cup in 1987. They would be relegated back to the Eric Shirley Shield in 1988 but returned to the Kenya Cup in 1989.
The team received a jolt in February of 1989 when the sponsor, KBL announced plans to disband a majority of its sports teams with the exception of its soccer and netball teams.
KBL’s decision threw the team into confusion. There were crucial decisions to be made. Would the players disperse and go their separate ways? John Kiwinda, the newly appointed captain and team fly half left the team and ended up at Barclays Bank RFC. Full back Gwada Ogot intially headed to Mwamba RFC, only to end up at Nondescripts RUFC the following week!
A certain player by the name Mark Andere held the view that the KBL players should approach Mwamba RFC where they would be accomodated amicably. Other team members felt that they had built a strong bond that could see them approach institutions for sponsorship as a rugby entity
Indeed talks were held with many organizations but it was a meeting between hooker Hezekiah Jerome Ougo and Patrick Odanga, a former Mwamba and Kenya player who was an employee of Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) that bore fruit. Further talks ensued,leading to the formation of Kenya Commercial Bank RFC who were belatedly admitted in the 1989 Kenya Cup to take the place of the now defunct Kenya Breweries RFC.
KCB’s Kenya Cup debut was against Impala RFC,a match that they massively won 96-6, at a time when four points were awarded for a try!
The team would give more steady performances in subsequent matches but wound up in the league’s lower reaches at the end of that season
In 1994, the team was relegated from the Kenya Cup to the Eric Shirley Shield for the 1995 season but bounced back to the Kenya Cup for the 1996 season and have never looked back, winning the Kenya Cup title three years in a row between 2005 and 2007, claiming the Enterprise Cup twice in 2004 and 2007 as well as the Impala Floodlit title in 2005 and 2007.
The KCB second team has grown in stature, dominating second division rugby where they have won the Eric Shirley Shield in 2004 and 2008 and the Mwamba Cup in 2004, 2005 ,2006 and 2010. It also serves as a feeder to the KCB first team.