What you need to know:
- Initially, local women’s rugby teams have only engaged one another in seven-a-side and 10-a-side competitions.
- KRU should match the renewed interest in women’s rugby with sound management and investment in the sport.
Beautiful scenes played out at the inaugural edition of Rugby Women’s Kenya Cup league that started on Saturday in Nairobi. Two of the three matches on the cards proved exciting with teams displaying admirable level of skill and effort in only their first matches in the competition.
Mwamba Ladies beat Nakuru 30-13 at the RFUEA Grounds, while newcomers Rick It lost 7-98 to a polished Impala Saracens at Impala Sports Club.
The launch of the league heralds a new dawn for women’s rugby in Kenya and promises to create a wide pool of talent in the longer version of the sport for national team selectors.
Initially, local women’s rugby teams have only engaged one another in seven-a-side and 10-a-side competitions.
The sevens version of the sport has been the most popular with the national team qualifying to compete in the World Rugby Sevens Circuit as well as at the Olympic Games.
Under the chairmanship of Mwangi Muthee, Mwamba Rugby Club has played a pioneering role in the introduction of women’s rugby in the country since 2006.
The women’s game has made great strides with its sevens national team, Kenya Lionesses, qualifying to represent Africa in the 2016 and 2020 Olympics.
Having taken part in Rugby Africa Women’s Sevens Cup for the first time in 2008, Kenya Lionesses won the title in 2018 in great style by beating the highly ranked South Africa to the trophy.
Although the women’s 15s game has grown slower than had been anticipated, the introduction of Rugby Women’s Kenya Cup has a huge promise.
Kenya Rugby Union should match the renewed interest in women’s rugby with sound management and investment in the sport.