NAIROBI, (Xinhua) --
The performance of Kenya’s national rugby team in
Namibia will not dampen its resolution to compete at its
inaugural World Cup in Japan in 2019, according to head coach
Speaking in Nairobi
on Tuesday, Snook said that while Kenya would love to claim
their ticket to the World Cup at the first time of asking
through automatic qualification, the team will have a second
chance if it fails to beat Namibia in Windhoek on Saturday
through the Rugby World Repechage competition in Marseille in
competition will feature Germany, Hong Kong and Canada, with the
winner sealing the final spot at next year’s World Cup.
“Our hopes and
aspirations are that we play really well and piece together 80
minutes of what has only been seen for 40 or so minutes in the
other games. It has been difficult with no warm-up games and
going in cold for one-off test matches,” Snook told Xinhua.
The New Zealander
has called in Dalmus Chituyi, Felix Ayange and Curtis Lilako to
return for Kenya’s final Rugby Africa Gold Cup clash away to
Chituyi, the two-try
hero in the 45-36 win over Zimbabwe on June 30, missed last
weekend’s 67-0 win over Tunisia through injury, along with
former Kenya Sevens international Ayange who was recovering from
the effects of root canal surgery, while Lilako returns for the
first time since the 28-24 win away to Morocco on 23 June.
“The Tunisian game
provided a bit of everything which the players will learn from.
I’m expecting that the players are ready for an 80 minute effort
and are really looking forward to it,” added Snook.
Commenting on their
inclusion, the coach said their return would form the steel
around which the silk of other players would be wrapped.
“Dallo is in as we
have a bigger bench in this game. It has been crucial in a
couple of other games with fresh forwards coming on late in the
game and making a telling difference. We hope this will be the
same. Felix is on the bench as he can cover many positions and
is competent in them all. He is a tough competitor and we know
he will be up for the physical battle. Biko who usually fills
this role is carrying an injury. Curtis is back in so we can
utilize his experience and cool head late in the game.”
Fit Namibia ready for
fast-paced Kenya in final round of Rugby Gold Cup match
WINDHOEK, (Xinhua) --
Namibia’s rugby national team head coach Phil
Davies said on Wednesday that his team is looking forward to a
big challenge when they face Kenya in the Rugby Africa Gold Cup
here on Saturday.
Namibia take on
Kenya in the final game of the qualifiers, and Davies told
Xinhua that the mood in the Namibian camp is excellent.
“We have great
respect for Kenya and we are all very much looking forward to a
big challenge come Saturday,” he added.
Asked about the
speed the Kenyan team possess, Davies said that quick players
are always a threat in any team.
“We have good speed
in our team as well, and it’s not about watching specific
players, it’s all about Namibia playing as a strong collective
unit and matching up to a very talented Kenyan side,” he told
According to Davies,
Namibia will not feature many changes from his last squad that
beat Zimbabwe, adding that his team’s match fitness is very
The Welshman added
that the weather conditions in Windhoek on Saturday will be
perfect for both teams.
“The pitch will be
nice and dry and will favor running rugby. It will be a
fantastic occasion and one that African rugby will be proud of,
I am sure,” he added.
Other matches on
Saturday see Uganda take on Zimbabwe, while Tunisia face
The 2018 Gold Cup is
pivotal for the African champions, as the tournament doubles as
a qualifier for the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan.