The Monitor (Kampala)

17 December 2010

Uganda: Rugby Cranes Drop in Car Cup

Rugby Cranes are paying the price for abysmal performances this year by dropping one level in the revamped Confederation of African Rugby (CAR) tournament.

The 2007 African champions are now in the second tier along with Ivory Coast, Madagascar and Zimbabwe for the event due next July in Nairobi, Kenya.

Under former Kenyan coach Ham Onsando, Rugby Cranes only managed to beat Zimbabwe at home before losing twice to Kenya in the expanded Victoria/Elgon Cup.

The decision to relegate Uganda, as per the International Rugby Board (IRB) rankings, was reached during the CAR general assembly in Ghana recently with Kenya, Morocco, Tunisia and World Cup-bound Namibia the teams in the top tier.

Adamant Blick

Senegal, Zambia, Cameroon and Botswana are in the third division. "The meeting decided to review the tournament and pool the teams accordingly to avoid the fiasco of what happened last year with teams failing to travel," Kenya Rugby Union (KRU) chairman Richard Omwela said, adding that the tri-nation event would take place along with the CAR Cup in June.

His Ugandan counterpart William Blick is adamant the ruggers can pass the test against teams they have beaten over the past three years.

"We just have to fight hard and get back to the top. However, this is good opposition to build for the (2015) World Cup qualifiers," Blick said.

The CAR Cup won't affect the Victoria Cup.

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