Kenya’s Shujaa begin Sevens Series campaign at Dubai 7s

Friday, January 12th, 2024 03:00 | By
Friday, January 12, 2024 - Issue No. 07974 John Okoth (left) wards off a tackle attempt by a Samurai player during Safari 7s Cup final at the RFUEA ground in November last year. PHOTO/Alex Njue

The Kenya men’s Sevens rugby team returns to action today at 1.14pm against Mexico and later at 5.58pm they renew their rivalry with neighbouring Uganda as the 2024 Challenger series kick-off with the Dubai 7s tournament.

Later on Saturday, the team will wrap up their Pool C campaign against Germany at 12.59pm, a must-win match for Kenya who would be hunting top pool finish heading into the rankings playoffs having clawed both Germany and Uganda in the previous Safari 7s tourney at RFUEA grounds in Nairobi last November.

The Challenger series will offer three rounds for the 12 participating teams to contest for the top four positions to get the opportunity to contest for promotion back to the creme de la creme World 7s series against the 12th ranked team from the top series.

Shujaa was relegated from the World sevens series after the London sevens event last year abd the team under a new technical bench led by head coach Kevin Wambua assisted by Andrew Amonde and Louis Kisia already proved selves through earning a direct ticket to the Paris Olympics games against South Africa who were recently crowned champions of the Dubai 7s world series event.

Shujaa’ technical bench named a strong 12-man squad highlighted by players who starred in the past lical sevens citcuit and the 2023 Safari 7s competition to kick off the campaign. The squad will be co captained by forward Vincent Onyala of KCB and Mwamba’s playmaker Tony Omondi.

The two are among the six experienced players in the squad that has been bolstered by new faces who raised their hands when the duty to save the team from relegation was announced after Kenya failed to survive last season’s axe in London.

The other experienced players include John Okoth, Kevin Wekesa, George Ooro and Brian Tanga. Completing the 12 man squad is Brian Mutugi, Festus Shiasi, William Mwanji, Samuel Asati, Nygel Amaitsa, and speedster Patrick Odongo.

Meanwhile the Kenya Lionesses 7s team are also be in Dubai for the womens Challenger series.

More on Sports