Rugby Rugby

Paarwater set to leave Simbas coaching role

Kenya Simbas head coach Jerome Paarwater watches as the team trains during teh Hong Kong Cup of Nations in November 2017. Photo/KRU

NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 4- South African tactician Jerome Paarwater has been released from his coaching role with the Kenya 15s team after a resolution by the board, ending his five year tenure at the helm of the Simbas.

The Kenya Rugby Union announced the development on Monday, but did not disclose who would be taking charge of the team.

“Jerome has been a key influence for the Simbas, guiding the team up the world rankings and making the team a formidable force on the continental stage. He has certainly been part and parcel of the country’s continued emergence in the longer version of the game,” a statement from the Union read.

No reason was however given for the dismissal of the tactician, coming barely six months before the 2019 World Cup qualifiers kick off.

Paarwater’s last engagement with the team was at the Hong Kong Cup of Nations last month where the Simbas failed to win a single match and had been preparing to give the team a shot at the World Cup in 2019 with the qualifiers set for next year.

Before the team left for Hong Kong, Paarwater had brought on board backs coach Levy Labeeb from his club Western Province, saying he would be a formidable addition to the backroom staff ahead of next year’s qualifiers.

Kenya Simbas High Performance coach Levy Labeeb (L), head coach Jerome Paarwaters (C) and player Samson Onsomu (R) at the RFUEA Grounds on Friday, November 3 during the naming of the team ahead of the Four Nations tournament in Hong Kong. Photo/RAYMOND MAKHAYA

There had been frequent complains from stakeholders and fans that the tactician was not spending enough time with the team, as he was mostly in South Africa, only arriving some few days to match days

The tactician had been recommended to Kenya in the Union’s partnership with Western Province and he almost historically led Kenya to their first ever World Cup but narrowly lost out in the qualifiers in 2014.

This season, Kenya won the Elgon Cup though nervously against Uganda, finished second in the Rugby Afrique Gold Cup while losing two test matches at home against Germany and Hong Kong.