Rwanda: Burundi Seeks to Learn From Rwanda's Cricket Success Story

The president of the newly-formed Burundian Cricket Federation, John-Clinton Nsengiyumva, says they want to follow the success story of Rwanda in the sport.

Nsengiyumva is convinced that Rwanda has made giant strides in the cricket game and which has also been a tool to foster unity which the Burundians want to emulate.

"Like Rwanda, Burundi has experienced civil wars and ethnic conflicts over the years. But now kids from different backgrounds find themselves in a cricket club, play together, have fun and ultimately become brothers and sisters thanks to this beautiful game," said Nsengiyumva during the official inauguration of the cricket federation.

"I think that cricket can not only rebuild our social life but also teach players new life skills and help them succeed in life," he added.

"My dream is to take cricket to all corners of the country, make it the second most popular and practiced game in Burundi after soccer. We want to produce competitive national teams for both men and women and help youths earn an income and a living through playing cricket at a professional level," He further noted.

Rwanda has established itself among the best cricket nations in Africa thanks to impressive strides that the country achieved in the game for the past two decades. Their efforts paid dividends after the country qualified for the recently-concluded ICC U19 Women's T20 World Cup that took place in South Africa.

Nsengiyumva, who holds both Burundian and Canadian citizenships, developed interest in the sport through some Indians and Pakistani friends.

He was elected first president of the Burundian Cricket Association days after the body was in January approved and authorized to conduct and carry on Cricket activities in Burundi by the government.

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