• The forward suffered a femur injury in their match against Zambia at the Club Games but is now keen to put those memories behind and return to the national fold.
• The KCB backrow accelerated his recovery by running to and from the KCB training ground in Ruaraka.
KCB forward Arthur Owira is keen on returning to the national Sevens side Shujaa after recovering from a career-threatening injury during the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast Australia.
Owira has been undergoing slow but sure recovery even though he featured for his club during last year's national Sevens circuit and recently faced Quins in the Eric Shirley Shield, this time as part of KCB II.
The forward suffered a femur injury in their match against Zambia at the Club Games but is now keen to put those memories behind and return to the national fold.
"I was positioned on the right the side of the pitch waiting for a pass and when I received the ball, I was tackled from behind. At first, I thought it was a normal tackle but then I saw the reaction on Andrew Amonde and Dan Sikuta's faces and I knew it was bad,” noted Owira.
The 28-year-old said play continued while he writhed in pain on the ground, with Nelson Oyoo scoring Kenya's second try. It is then that the referee was alerted of his injury and thus stopped play.
He was then rushed to Gold Coast Hospital where he underwent surgery where an intramedullary rod was fixed to aid movement in the leg.
The surgery took two and half hours and he stayed at the hospital for 10 days . Physiotherapy started the next day and he termed it the most difficult of recovery he has ever gone through.
"It was tough and very painful. I was asked to do certain things which looked easy but because of the injury, it was really challenging. I also had to get used to walking on crutches,” noted Owira.
The injury ruled him out of the World Cup Sevens in San Francisco in July of 2018, something he regrets.
"I really wanted to play at the World Cup. I was in good form but the injury ended my ambitions,” observed Owira.
Owira said Dr Baranabas Bargoria played a key role in his recovery. "He was there with me during and after surgery. He stood with me in hospital and even on the flight back home, he made sure I was comfortable.”
Upon returning home Owira continued with his physiotherapy with Kenya Sevens physiotherapist Lamech Bogonko and KCB team doctor Joseph Koli for the next four months.
The KCB backrow accelerated his recovery by running to and from the KCB training ground in Ruaraka.
"I tested myself and I felt I was improving and I felt happy. Mentally, I did not give up. It's a slow painful process but you must take each day as it comes,” said Owira.
Owira thanked his Kenya Sevens and KCB teammates for their support during the lengthy layoff.
"The players came to see me in hospital after the game and were of great support and even when I came back home, they were still checking on me. This kept me going," he observed.
Owira resumed full training in June last year for the start of the Sevens circuit since he could handle contact. When the season started, Owira was key as KCB won four out the six tournaments on offer to clinch the title.
"It was a good experience playing in two of the six tournaments and creating a platform to ensure that we able to win the circuit,” he added.
Owira said the club is monitoring his every step and will not be thrown into the deep end of playing in the Kenya Cup.
"KCB is a competitive team and getting back into the first team after a long layoff is not easy. A few young players have stood out and competition for places is intense," said Owira.
Owira said mentally he is where he needs to be tough.
"I need to play consistently at the highest level, featuring in the Sevens season for the next two seasons to put myself in contention for a return to the national team," he said.