Former Kenya international Lawrence Buyachi is enjoying returning back to playing, couple of seasons after transitioning to coaching.
Buyachi left Top Fry Nakuru in 2017 to take up coaching role at Championship side South Coast Pirates but has since returned to playing.
He’s part of the Kabras Sugar squad that is chasing a second Kenya Cup title in five years.
What made Buyachi concentrate fully on coaching at a young age? Something been done by Mwamba head coach Kevin Wambua, Strathmore Leos coach Louis Kisia, Blak Blad's Motto Williams and few others.
“I have always wanted to coach,” he says after a training session at Kakamega Showground. “When I played in Nakuru I used to coach our high school in Nakuru,. Coaching is me, I like coaching and giving back to the game.”
In 2016, Buyachi won the SOYA Awards Comeback of the year award. He had stayed out for a year nursing a knee injury. The bully forward stepped on to the field as a substitute to hand Kenya Simbas a winning try against Spain in an international test match back in 2015 in Nairobi.
“I’m always ready for the national duty. Always,” he takes time to comment.
He came off the bench in the test match but his introduction was fruitful as he came in and changed the game, rolling on the maul to hand 'Kenya a historic victory (36-27) over Spain.
“It wasn’t big transition moving to coaching. I just took it fully. It was an amazing experience, learned a lot of stuff while doing that.”
Going back to playing? At Kabras Sugar, one of Nakuru's biggest rivals.
“I missed playing again, there are things I felt I wasn’t doing better so I had to come back to play.”
With Dan Sikuta heavily involved with Kenya 7s, Kabras had to look for a backrow who could do the work as they chase the Kenya Cup title.
“Kakamega is home. I had some stuff to do here when I got a phone call from the chairman who asked Can you play? I said I can try. I came back and I’m here now.”
“It was a bit hard coming back to play. The intensity, the game has grown. Guys are fruit, faster than when I left in 2017 but I had to adjust.”
Buyachi’s former side South Coast Pirates is the only side from Coast plying top flight Rugby after Mombasa RFC were relegated. During his time, Pirates finished 10th to survive relegation as Kitale RFc and Ngong RFc went down.
“It was an amazing experience. The only challenge we had was lack of depth. There’s no big pool of players in Diani. The boys, however, were yearning to learn, we had beautiful moments.”
Kabras Sugar are already in Kenya Cup semis -put on hold for 30 days due to Corona Virus- awaiting the winner of Mwamba vs Impala.
“The beauty about what I have learned this season is we’ve treated each game with the respect it deserves. We plan better, meet and discuss from Monday so I think we are prepared.”
“Hopefully the cup is coming to Kakamega.”