NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 04 – The national men’s and women’s sevens teams have received a financial boost of Sh2.8mn from the National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK) to go towards high performance preparations for July’s Tokyo Olympics.
The support will go towards supporting the team to travel to Madrid, Spain for a series of high-performance preparation events hosted by the Spanish Rugby Federation and World Rugby and will feature up to 12 men’s and 12 women’s teams.
‘’Two of the three teams going to the Olympics are from one federation and this is not a mean feat. We need to support the Union more, so that they can continue performing at the levels they are at now. The resources required by our rugby teams is substantial, we are hoping the government can also commit their support for the Olympic teams as soon as possible,’’ NOC-K Acting Sevretary General Francis Mutuku said.
Receiving the support on behalf of the teams were Janet Okelo and Sheila Chajira from the Kenya Lionesses as well as Kenya Rugby Union (KRU) officials Joshua ARoni and Thomas Odundo.
Rugby was one of the sports that was late to resume training after the resumption of sports guidelines were released by the Ministry of Sports.
The teams resumed training late last year despite the difficult Covid requirements and conditions. The Union made the requisite arrangements to have the team training before the start of the official Olympic training program.
‘’We thank NOC-K for the commitment to teams going to the Tokyo Olympics to ensure they are well prepared. We will use the support given by NOC-K to take our teams to Spain. To adequately prepare the team we require resources and our sponsors pulled back because of the economic challenges of the pandemic,” Aroni, the Union’s treasurer stated.
He added; “The NOC-K support will start us off, but we appeal to sponsors to come forward and push the team to perform at their best.”
The Union is expected to name Lionesses and Shujaa teams which will head to Spain for the tournaments which are scheduled for the end of this month.