KIGALI, Rwanda, November 7, 2019/ — Friends of Rwandan Rugby a small, innovative charity based in the United Kingdom has continued to support the Rwandan Rugby Federation (RRF) (www.RwandaRugby.com), through training coaches, as well as children and donating rugby equipment to help build trust, friendships, and foster shared experiences on the field and have fun!
This week, ten officials including coaches from Scotland, Wales, England, France, and South Africa were in Kigali conducting a training session to boost the national rugby team Silverbacks ahead of the Africa Rugby Cup game against Ivory Coast on November 23, 2019.
In an interview, Matthew Phillips says that as a charity they have come to Rwanda every year to develop rugby around the country in primary and secondary schools to get kids to play the sport to become better people in social life.
FoRR says that rugby is built on values and camaraderie and it is these values that are making a difference to the lives of the children in Rwanda. Allowing them to express themselves and play together will added value to their lives for years to come.
“This year’s occasion,” he pointed out, “The Rwandan Rugby Federation President Tharcisse Kamanda asked us [FoRR) to come here this year to help train with the national team the Silverbacks in preparation for the World Cup qualifier against Ivory Coast.
Matt believes that the Rwandan national team has improved massively in terms of standards since he started coming to Rwanda in 2013 though, he noted that what needs to be done is for the people to get behind them in terms of sponsorship financially from Government so that federation can help rugby to the next level.
This year, FoRR donated over a tone of rugby equipment including playing kits, shoes, and balls, last year they donated over 400 balls to RRF.
FoRR will be back in Rwanda as promised by Matt to deliver training to children in districts next year. For the last 12 years, FoRR volunteers have spent time with Rwandan rugby development officers visiting schools, clubs, and colleges meeting the team and engaging with children and young adults who are passionate about the sport.
To conclude the week-long training program, FoRR organized a friendly match on Wednesday at Amahoro stadium between the Silverback vs International invitational select team, the game concluded 11-8 in favor of Silverbacks.
Both sides embraced each after an entertaining and an exciting game that drew the attention of a few rugby admirers before heading for a refreshment chat.
Having watched South Africa make history by defeating England to lift the third World Rugby Cup, Kamanda the President of RRF who recently returned from Japan is already confident the Silverbacks are on the right footing.
“The team is ready to battle Ivory Coast, we believe we can defeat them, looking forward to a positive outcome though we have seen a few injuries which the team doctor will have to look to make sure they are fine,” he mentioned.
He further pointed out that the scrum position, in particular, is still short of a few strapping and good players to move the ball forward but promised the head coach Claude Ezoua has set plans to fill the gap.
If the Silverbacks win they will progress to the next round to face a formidable and experienced Kenyan both home and away. The team will depart Kigali on November 20th to face Ivory Coast.