NAIROBI, Kenya, February 17 – Kenya sevens coach Benjamin Ayimba has dismissed criticism of his team’s topsy turvy perfomance over the last two legs of the International Rugby Board (IRB) Sevens Series.Ayimba believes that his side have been consistent throughout the series so far and the barbs that have been thrown their way are uncalled for.
“I think it’s unfair for people to be making statements when they don’t even know what’s happening. One thing that we have done very well is that we have been in the last main cup quarter finals of the tournaments we have played in,” said Ayimba after the team’s arrival on Wednesday.
Ayimba believes that the team is being put under unnecessary pressure to deliver the big prize saying that his side should be given time.
“We’re not super men, we’re human beings who only started doing this recently. Five years back no one asked what the team was upto now everyone has bright ideas so people should let us grow and focus on the positives,” added the former Kenya and Impala captain.
Kenya bowed out of the Wellington Sevens after losing to Australia in the plate semi and redeemed themselves a week later by reaching the main cup semi in Las Vegas where they lost to New Zealand.
Ayimba added that lack of resources was their undoing in Wellington after featuring in the Darwin Sevens a fortnight earlier.
“There’s talk that we should have carried a large group of players but I wish there was money,” said Ayimba.
“If there is money we will carry them. But for now we are working with the resources that we have. We are doing the best under the constraints that we have,” he added.
Kenya captain Humphrey Kayange belives his team needs to work on keeping their composure when playing in the pressure cooker atmosphere of the main cup semis.
“At that stage it’s all about playing with your heart out and having very few mistakes. The more mistakes you make the more likely you will as it has happened to us twice already this season,” said Kayange.
The Mwamba centre said that fatigue may have been a factor in their lackluster performance in Wellington.
“We have never been away from home for that long especially with the two weeks we spent in Darwin. It plays a lot on the mind as well. Physically we were up to it but mentally we struggled,” said Kayange.