NAIROBI, Kenya, January 30 – The national sevens rugby team are set to leave for Wellington on Friday night where they will take part in the third leg of the International Rugby Board (IRB) Sevens series on February 6-7.,
Benjamin Ayimba’s side who are currently perched in eighth place on the IRB standings with six points are in Pool A alongside top seeds and current series leaders South Africa, Scotland and Tonga.
Kenya will be keen to make up much needed ground after failing to secure crucial points in George late last year where they failed to make the main cup quarterfinals before losing to France in the bowl semi finals.
The tour will then head to San Diego, California where the Safari Sevens champions will face defending series champions New Zealand, France and South American side Uruguay at PETCO Park.
Ayimba last week named 15 players for the tour with the return of former Kenya captain Sidney Ashioya and Impala fly half Peter Ocholla raising expectations ahead of the Rugby Sevens World Cup due to be held in Dubai in March.
Nato Simiyu, Biko Adema, Allan Onyango and Joshua Gathumbi have also been recalled to the expanded side which is preparing for its third world cup where they will lock horns with arch rivals England, Tunisia and Hong Kong in Pool E.
Kenya who last week took home the Team of the Year award at the Sports Personality of the Year (SOYA) gala are regarded as dark horses to win sevens show piece event whose title is currently being held by Fiji who sacked their coach and former captain Waisale Serevi.
The world cup is being staged at the stunning ‘Sevens’ stadium which has been purpose built for this tournament that is being held for the fifth time.
Humphrey Kayange (Captain), Victor Oduor, Collins Injera, Horace Otieno, Lavin Asego, Peter Ocholla, Brian Nyikuli, Nato Simiyu, Gibson Weru, Cyprian Shimenga, Allan Onyango, Sidney Ashioya, Benedict Nyambu, Biko Adema, Joshua Gathumbi.
Benjamin Ayimba (Coach), Felix Ochieng (Assistant coach), Oscar Osir (Team manager), George Odhiambo (Physio), Wanjiku Maina (Nutritionist), Geoffrey Kimani (sprint coach)