Rugby Rugby

KRU to name new Sevens coaches on Thursday

Jubilant Kenya 7s players celebrate after upsetting South Africa's Blitzbokke 14-12 in their Pool B crash of Cape Town Sevens on December 12, 2015. PHOTO/AFP
Jubilant Kenya 7s players celebrate after upsetting South Africa’s Blitzbokke 14-12 in their Pool B crash of Cape Town Sevens on December 12, 2015. PHOTO/AFP

NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 10 – The Kenya Rugby Union (KRU) is expected to name the new men’s and women’s Sevens technical benches by Thursday, according to director of squads Oscar Mango.

KRU conducted interviews last week for positions of head coach, assistant coach, team manager, strength and conditioning coach and physiotherapists with the list of shortlisted candidates set to be presented to the board on Wednesday.

Five candidates comprising four locals and one foreigner have been selected for the Kenya Sevens head coach role while three candidates (all local) have been shortlisted for the Lionesses’ coaching job.

“We conducted thorough interviews seeking a person that will ensure there is success in our national teams. On Wednesday, we will present the names to the board but at the moment I cannot divulge any more details before we conclude the process,” Mango told Capital Sport.

The Union advertised the hiring of technical benches for both teams after the expiry of contracts on September 30.

A total of 15 coaches including nine foreigners applied for the Kenya Sevens job which was managed by Benjamin Ayimba while five applied for the Lionesses’ role that was under the tutelage of Mike Shamiah.

With less than two months before the new Sevens season starts, Mango has admitted it would be prudent for the new coach to get to work immediately.

“The good thing is as a Union we have a provisional squad of 40 players prepared and it will be the duty of the new coach to now name his final team. We hope that the board makes the decision as soon as possible so that we start preparations for the new season early enough,” Mango added.

He affirmed that all players will be contracted by November 1, adding that the Union has ensured all issues raised by players have been addressed.

“No player will go into the pitch without signing a contract. All of them will be season-long but we are trying to look at ways we can have long term contracts. The issues last time were about money taxes. The Union at the moment has sponsorship and I believe we have sufficient budget for the year.”

Kenya performed well last season, winning a main cup title for the first time ever in Singapore before finishing the season seventh on the log with 98 points.

Shujaa are in a tough group for the opening 2016/2017 leg in Dubai which takes place from December 2, having been pooled with Australia, France and Japan in Group D.