Strength and Conditioning coach Gibbons quits Kenya 7s
The Kenya Sevens strength and conditioning coach Ian Gibbons has quit his role with the national side less than two weeks to the fifth and sixth legs of the HSBC World Sevens Series in Las Vegas, USA and Vancouver, Canada.
Gibbons penned a six-month deal with the Kenya Rugby Union (KRU) that started in December 2016 that was due to run until the end of the current season in May 2017.
The former Strength and Conditioning coach at Saracens in England and the Scarlets Rugby in Wales was part of the sweeping changes in the Kenya Sevens technical bench before the start of the season.
It witnessed the departure of Head coach Benjamin Ayimba, his deputy Paul Murunga, team manager Newton Ong’alo and Gibbons predecessor Geoffrey Kimani at the end of the 2015/2016 World Sevens Series season.
Kimani has already signed up with the Uganda Rugby Union in a similar role with their sevens team.
The KRU statement announcing Gibbons’ unexpected departure was brief, stating,
“The KRU wishes to confirm that Ian Gibbons has stepped down from his role as Kenya Sevens Strength & Conditioning Coach.
“We wish to thank him for his service during his time with the Kenya Sevens set up and wish him all the best in his future endeavours. The KRU is in the interim making arrangements to fill the S&C role and will make an announcement in due course.”
It is still unclear what prompted Gibbon’s resignation but the former Gloucester player is linked with the Welsh Women’s Sevens team in the same capacity but there is no official announcement on the Wales Rugby Union official website.
Unlike previous S & C coaches who preceded him, Gibbons who lives in the United Kingdom was not fully based in Kenya and has been linking up with the Kenya Sevens a fortnight before each leg in the world sevens series.
Strength and Conditioning is an integral component of rugby which increases the players’ physical capacities and also an effective way of reducing injuries.
The Kenya Sevens team for the Las Vegas and Vancouver rounds will be named on Thursday.
Kenya 15s Strength and Conditioning coach, Richard Ochieng has been filling in for Gibbons whenever he was away from the team.
-Kenerickson Njeru contributed to this report
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