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Octoberfest rugby tournament shines a light on women’s rugby in Kenya



Octoberfest rugby tournament shines a light on women’s rugby in Kenya

I can’t wait to see the rugby journey of these young girls over the next 10 years when these girls wear the national colors

NAIROBI, Kenya, October 8, 2021 / APO Group / –

On the weekend of October 2-3, the Nanyuki Sports Club hosted the Octoberfest rugby tournament. First played in 2017, this year’s tournament was particularly focused on senior women‘s rugby.

Tournament coordinator Dennis Gem explained the reasoning behind this, saying, “It was done with the intention of providing more playing time for the girls. I look forward to liaising with the Kenya Rugby Union to be part of the stages of the women’s national seven-a-side tour. ”

He also gave a brief history of the tournament, saying: “This tournament dates back to 2014, when we used to host a mixed rugby tournament in March. We then moved it to October, initially calling it the Moi Day All Girls & Boys 7s. We initially fielded teams of boys and girls. With an increasing number of girls participating in the tournament, we have chosen to enter women’s teams and have them play in their own category.

Gem also paid tribute to the British Army Training Unit in Kenya (BATUK) for their logistical and moral support as well as members of the press for their role in covering the event.

In addition to senior women’s rugby, the tournament also featured age category competitions in both boys and girls categories.

The senior women’s competition saw Topfry Nakuru, Blad Babes from Kenyatta University, Ruck IT / Hidden Talent, Nanyuki and Rugby Gem participate while Gilgil, Nakuru, Burguret and four Lewa Conservancy sponsored teams compete in the U14 boys and girls. .

This event was also attended by Kenya Rugby Union Director Peris Mukoko, whose comments on the event are provided below.

Last weekend I attended the Octoberfest rugby festival held for the very first time in this part of the country (Laikipia county – central region) at the Nanyuki sports club. The two-day event saw well over 200 girls, women and boys between the ages of 8 and 20 participate.

Day one saw a mix of girls and boys take to the pitch in exciting matches of tag rugby in the U-14 category and rugby sevens for the ladies. Fun, fair play and continuity were evident in every game as the teams tried to outdo each other. It was quite exciting to see so many young girls and women showing remarkable skills on the pitch. Two young girls aged 8 and 9, who held firm in the U-14 girls category, particularly impressed me. Their confidence with the ball in hand and their ability to communicate effectively with girls almost twice as old really shows that rugby is indeed a sport for everyone. Even a sudden downpour in the afternoon did not cool their spirits. They waited patiently and, as soon as it was over, resumed with the same enthusiasm and energy to cap off a good first day.

The second day was devoted to rugby sevens in the U-20 women’s category. There was a lot of smooth ride, sublime passes and tough tackles. Each team left everything on the field as they all searched for first place in the round robin that started the day before. I clearly saw 10 to 12 young girls who could potentially play for the national team in 1 to 2 years.

I must congratulate Dennis Gem, a passionate advocate for local development, for organizing this. The support the tournament received from BATUK was timely as the tournament was well organized and went smoothly. They facilitated transportation, meals and accommodation for teams and officials from Kisii, Mombasa, Nakuru and Nairobi. In addition, they provided medical services and equipment for the two-day tournament.

I was very happy to see so much rugby this weekend. I am full of hope and look forward to seeing these young girls’ journey in rugby over the next 10 years, when these girls wear the national colors like the ones that came before them since the Lionesses. from Kenya entered the field in 2005..

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