4 May 2008

Rwanda: Ruggers Off to Burundi

Kigali — The national men's rugby team 'Silverbacks' left yesterday for Bujumbura to take part in this year's Confederation of African Rugby , CAR Super 16 tournament which runs from May 4-11.

The 25-man contingent which left aboard a Belvedere bus included 22 players and three officials from the local rugby federation.

After DR Congo pulling out, Rwanda will contend with Burundi and Kibubu; a Belgian-based club at the week-long event.

Although Rwanda won't play until Thursday, the team traveled early to get acclimatized to conditions in Burundi.

"We traveled early because we need to acclimatize to conditions in Burundi and their rugby grounds," team head coach Gerard Nsenga emphasized.

Over the last couple of years, Rwanda has had mixed performances in the competition.

In 2006 and 2007, Rwanda finished third but Nsenga believes that the Silverbacks are genuine contenders this year.

"Although we are missing some of our best players, the guys available still have the potential to challenge for top honors this year," Nsenga stressed.

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