By Khalifa Hemed
Published February 4, 2020
Rugby Africa, the continental body that manages the game across the mother continent, has announced the successful bid of Kenya to host the Rugby U20 Barthés Trophy for three consecutive years beginning with the game’s U20 Barthés Trophy that is scheduled for April 19, 22 and 26 in the capital, Nairobi.
“The Kenya Rugby Union and the entire Kenyan people are thrilled by the excellent news from Rugby Africa awarding Kenya the Barthes U20 Trophy hosting rights for the next three years,” Oduor Gangla,Chairman of Kenya Rugby Union, says. “It is indeed a great honour to all of us We will work closely with Rugby Africa, the government, commercial sponsors, media and other stakeholders to ensure successful delivery of the events.”
The Barthés Trophy, that is sponsored by Société Générale, is said to be the only junior tournament in Africa in which eight national U20 teams compete for the title.
Guédel N’Diaye, President of the Competition Commission at Rugby Africa and President of the Senegal Rugby Federation who says he looks forward to launching what he terms as ‘an exciting 2020 season’, say, “The U20 Barthés Trophy marks the first tournament in the Rugby Africa calendar this year. We believe that we need this kind of commitment as shown by Kenya Rugby Union to strengthen our sport for a sustainable and strong future. With solid commitment we can equally build a successful broadcast and commercial program around the event. The young players are our major asset in terms of growing participation and fan base. The U20 Barthés Trophy tournament speaks to our long-term strategy for Africa to become the breeding ground of the next generation of world class athletes. Through this competition we can measure the real progress accomplished by the federation in terms of the development rugby amongst the youth. 80 % of the selected players evolved from their local championships.”
Participating teams in 2020, in order of the current ranking, are Kenya, Namibia, Senegal, Madagascar, Tunisia, Zimbabwe, Côte d’Ivoire, and Zambia.
April 19, 2020
M1: KEN vs ZAM
M2: MAD vs TUN
M3: NAM vs CIV
M4: SEN vs ZIM
April 22, 2020
M5: Looser M1 vs Looser M2
M6: Looser M3 vs Looser M4
M7: Winner M1 vs Winner M2
M8: Winner M3 vs Winner M4
April 26, 2020
M9: A4 vs B4
M10: A3 vs B3
M11: A2 vs B2
M12: A1 vs B1
Meanwhile, Kenya’s national women’s sevens team is scheduled to play at the second last leg of the 2019/20 HSBC Women’s Sevens World Series, the Langford Sevens taking place on 2nd and 3rd May 2020 in Langford, Canada.
The Lionesses, who finished as runners up at Africa Women’s Sevens as well as the Dubai Sevens International Invitational Women’s tournament in 2019, will also play at the 2020 HSBC Women’s Sevens World Series qualifiers set for April 3 – 5, 2020 in Hong Kong.
As we look forward to the U20 Barthés Trophy tournament and HSBC Women’s Sevens World Series, Kenya Rugby Union has confirmed the schedule for the Kenya National Sevens Circuit 2020 that is sponsored by Stanbic Bank.
Action for the circuit that shall be contested over 6 rounds between July and September 2020, kicks off with the Kabeberi Sevens on July 25 – 26 in Meru before heading to Nairobi for the Christie Sevens the week after.
Teams will then travel to Kakamega in Western Kenya for the third round August 15 – 16 before making the journey to Mombasa at the Indian Ocean coast for the Driftwood Sevens August 22 – 23.
The fifth round is then expected to take place at the Dala Sevens in Kisumu September 5 – 6 with the circuit finale happening at the Prinsloo Sevens in Nakuru September 12 – 13, 2020.
Here is the schedule of Kenya National Sevens Circuit 2020 announced by KRU:
Round 1: Kabeberi 7s, Kinoru Stadium, Meru: 25-26 July
Round 2: Christie 7s, RFUEA Ground, Nairobi: 1-2 August
Round 3: Kakamega 7s,The Bull Ring, Kakamega: 15-16 August
Round 4: Driftwood 7s, Mombasa Sports Club, Mombasa: 22-23 August
Round 5: Dala 7s,Mamboleo Showground, Kisumu: 5-6 September
Round 6: Prinsloo 7s,Nakuru Athletic Club, Nakuru: 12-13 September.