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Kenya Lionesses win silver at Dubai Sevens Challenger Series

Rugby
 Kenya Lionesses star Naomi Amuguni.[World Rugby]

Kenya Lionesses on Sunday won the silver medal at the World Rugby Sevens Challenger Series finals in Dubai.

This is after losing 19-5 to China in the finals staged at the Sevens Stadium.

In the semifinals, Judith Akinyi, Naomi Amuguni and Sinaida Nachio each crossed the white wash to win 17-0 against Argentina reach finals.

Lionesses overcame a mixed start to the competition on Friday where they lost and won in their opening two Group B matches to top the pool.

On Friday, Lionesses lost 12-10 to Czech after earlier defeating China 17-12. A big 40-0 win over Mexico lifted them to the top of Group B with seven points and a quartefinal berth against Czech.

Seeking revenge after their loss to the European side, Naomi Amuguni scored a brace as Sinaida Nachio and Stella Wafula also crossed the white wash for a 22-12 win to book a semifinal date against Argentina who knocked out Thailand with a similar score line.

The Challenger tournaments replicate the Olympic Games competition format, with the 12 teams drawn into three pools of four teams each. The top two from each pool as well as the two best third-placed finishers will qualify for the knockout stages with quarter-finals and

The Challenger was introduced in February 2020 to boost the development of rugby sevens across the globe and provide a clear promotion pathway to reach the top level of global rugby sevens for the short format of the game which has experienced huge growth over the past two decades since the introduction of the global sevens series and becoming an Olympic sport at the Rio 2016 Games.

The bigger and better than ever 2024 edition of the Challenger consists of three rounds. Following the opener in Dubai the men’s and women’s teams now move on to Estadio Charrúa in Montevideo, Uruguay on 8-10 March before standalone women’s and men’s events at Henryk Reyman's Municipal Stadium in Krakow, Poland and Dantestadion in Munich, Germany respectively on 18-19 May.

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