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Safari Sevens to be deferred over Kenya poll uncertainty

By Kimathi Kamau NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- The annual international invitational tournament, Safari 7s is the latest high-profile Kenyan sporting event to be deferred owing to the tensions surrounding the Oct. 26 presidential rerun in the country.

The Kenya Rugby Union (KRU) announced on Thursday new dates for the 2017 edition of the event will be Nov. 10 to 12, a week later than scheduled.

According to KRU chairman, Richard Omwela, the decision was reached by the board who unanimously agreed that it would be risky to hold the event a few days after the repeat polls.

“We know according to law; the results can take up to seven days to be announced. Therefore, it will greatly affect the tournament, we saw it wise to postpone it,” Omwela, a trained lawyer by profession, declared.

The Union boss disclosed nine nations had confirmed participation in the tournament thus far.

“South Africa will send their top provincial sides eastern Province and Golden Warriors. So far Australia, Samurai, Fiji, Portugal, Germany, Hong Kong, Uganda, Zimbabwe, and Zambia, have confirmed they will grace the tourney.

“We expect the number to go slightly higher,” Omwela added. The Union boss maintained just like last year, Kenya would field two sides, Shujaa and Moran.

The anxiety over the rerun in the country has been escalating since Sept. 1 when the Supreme Court of Kenya to nullify the Aug. 8 election victory of incumbent President; Uhuru Kenyatta.

On Wednesday, organisers of the annual Stanchart Nairobi Marathon announced the race would be moved forward to Nov. 29 while the ICC World Cricket Challenge clash between Kenya and the Netherlands that was to be played this weekend in Nairobi will now be hosted in New England, South Africa.




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