Preparations for World Rugby U20 Trophy are in top gear as Kenya readies to welcome the world for the international show piece scheduled to run from 15th -30th July, 2023.
This is the second time Kenya is hosting the U20 Trophy since 2009 when the tournament was known as the Junior World Rugby Trophy.
The competition took place in Brazil four years ago and Kenya has affirmed its readiness to welcome the next generation of global rugby talent over the next two weeks.
Kenya Rugby Union Chairman, Alexander ‘Sasha’ Mutai said the tournament heralds a new beginning for Rugby in the country as the union looks to revive Safari Sevens tournament and re-introduce a 15s aside Kenya schools’ tournament.
“We want to get things up. We want to turn back to our winning ways. With under 20, we have confidence in the future of rugby and this tournament is just the beginning.We are ambitious and have no doubts that our boys will do well in the tournament,” said Mutai during the tournament’s Media Launch at the Nairobi National Park.
He added, “ We also intend to spread Rugby into primary schools and expose our young talents to international sporting events.”
Kenya Rugby Union, Vice Chairman and World Rugby U20 Trophy Chairman, Moses Ndale said preparations for the U20 Trophy tournament are going on well.
“ The preparations have been going on really well. We need to appreciate the government through the Ministry of Youth Affairs, the Arts and Sports because we are working hand-in-hand with them to get the preparations right
and ensure the tournament is competitive. I believe Kenya will perform better,” said Ndale.
The government is supporting the tournament through Talanta Hela, an Initiative that seeks to Monetize Talent and Revolutionize The country’s Sports and Creative Space into a Mega Industry.
Kenya Rugby Union Commercial Director, Harriet Okach also expressed appreciation for Kenyan government’s, World Rugby’s and Rugby Africa’s support of the tournament as she called on corporates to extend a similar support to uplift the country’s young sporting talents.
“We now ask Kenyans and the corporates to buy in. We are a new board, we have good plans for the game and we need all the support that we can get,” said Okach.
Strength And Conditioning Coach Motto Williams said the Kenya Under 20 rugby team, Chipu reported to camp on Tuesday June 27th as they begin to move from weekend camps to residential camps ahead of the tournament.
“We are checking and ticking the small boxes now as we plan to start full training ahead of the big event,” said Williams.
He added, “The boys did very well in the Barthes tournament and I believe with proper preparation they will do event better in the World Rugby U20. We are also calling on all Kenyans to turn up in big numbers to rally behind our young stars.”
Regular fans will be charged Ksh 300, the VIP(Ksh 1,000) to watch the tournament scheduled to take place at the Nyayo National Stadium, while Students presenting their National ID’s and are in School Uniforms will gain a free entry.
On July 28th, 2023 the Kenya Rugby Union will host a cocktail event to showcase its new products to stakeholders and investors as part of its major comeback.