NAIROBI, Kenya, April 20 – Namibia captain Robert Herridge believes the experience in his side will help boost their chances of securing the International Rugby Board (IRB) Junior World Rugby Trophy (JWRT) title.
Herridge who will lead his team out against hosts Kenya on Tuesday afternoon at the Rugby Football Union of East Africa (RFUEA) told Capital Sport that having played in last year’s event and winning the 2009 Africa Junior Cup will pay dividends.
“We are well prepared for the tournament. We are young and exciting side with a bit of experience as some of us played last time in Chile,” said Herridge.
“A lot of us are now passing on that experience to the new players and we are looking forward to the tournament,” added the fullback.
Herridge added that his team who will also meet the United States and the Cayman Islands in the group stages expects the battle with Kenya to be a tough one due to the fact they are the hosts and will be out to perform well in front of their home crowd.
“Kenya is going to be tough because they are the host country and they will have the home country behind them. So we have to do well to win the game tomorrow,” said Herridge.
Herridge was speaking at the official launch of the tournament at Panafric Hotel where the captains of all eight sides and the coaches were present.
“We want this tournament to leave a legacy in this country to show that rugby in this country is a national sport,” said Kenya Rugby Football Union (KRFU) chairman Richard Omwela.
“I hope that it will also help us to develop our rugby standards so that by 2015, we (Kenya) will be taking part in the Rugby World Cup,” he added.
IRB chairman Bernard Lappasett is expected to grace the final of the tournament which will run for the next two weeks at the newly refurbished RFUEA grounds and Impala club.
The teams were expected to go through the Captain’s Run on Monday afternoon at both match venues before the tournament kicks off the following day.
Matchday 1 Schedule:
Papua New Guinea v Romania – 12 p.m.
Cayman Islands v USA – 2 p.m.
Chile v Korea – 2 p.m.
Kenya v Namibia – 4.15 p.m.