Ayimba: Shujaas will make Kenya proud at Rio


Kenya Sevens Rugby team coach Benjamin Ayimba (left) is received by Sports Cabinet Secretary, Hassan ...
Kenya Sevens Rugby team coach Benjamin Ayimba (left) is received by Sports Cabinet Secretary, Hassan Wario upon landing at the JKIA on April 19, 2016. Kenya 7s team beat Fiji 30-7 in the final of the Singapore Sevens to capture their first World Series event. Photo/Stafford Ondego/www.sportpicha.com

The Kenya Rugby 7s coach Benjamin Ayimba is optimistic of a gold medal in the Rio 2016 Olympics in Brazil despite Shujaas being pooled alongside New Zealand, Great Britain and Japan.

Speaking after the draw, Ayimba believes each team has equal chances to qualify for the next round but with a little more practice and training, the Singapore World Series winners will have a better chance in qualifying for the next round.

“In a big tournament like this, anything can happen. Every country has a plan and a worked out strategy and it is my hope that the players will have 100 percent focus and maintain a positive mind ahead of the tournament,” said Ayimba.

It will be Shujaas’ debut tournament at the Olympics as they face New Zealand, Great Britain and Japan.

“We will train for the tournament as we did for the HSBC Series in Singapore as we try to create the mental agility in the players for the tournament in Rio.”

“All we want to do is to win!” added Ayimba.

In the women’s draw, Coach Michael Shamia is hoping the lionesses will equally make the country pride.

In a tough draw that sees the lionesses also face New Zealand, France and Spain, coach Shamia believes the  ladies have what it takes to cause a major upset against the opponents and reach the quarter final of the event which will better their chances in winning a medal.

“The draw is tough, all the teams in our group are top countries and we are planning to take each at a time to better our chances for qualification in the tournament,” the soft spoken coach said.

“We’ve played against Spain and France so we have a sneak preview of their game but we haven’t played New Zealand and we are hoping to take the game to them.”

Report by John Njuguna

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