Senior Kenya 7s players resume training after improved contract offers

By Clinton Nyabuto: Monday, March 25th 2019 at 13:32 GMT +3 | Rugby
Shujaa 7s players in a past match [Photo: Courtesy]
Five senior Kenya 7s players have returned to the Shujaa training camp ahead of the Hong Kong and Singapore HSBC World Sevens Series tournaments in April.
Forward Jeff Oluoch, halfback Augustine Lugonzo, wingers Leonard Mugaisi and Nelson Oyoo and former Shujaa skipper Andrew Amonde have joined the squad after receiving contract offers with better pay from the Kenya Rugby Union last week.
Kenya 7s team manager Eric Ogweno confirmed that the players were back in training and the team hopes for improved performance in Asia.
"Yes! Some of the senior players have resumed training and is good to have them back alongside the rookies and we hope for an improved outing next month in Asia," said Ogweno.
However, Shujaa talisman Collins Injera, center Billy Odhiambo and veteran winger Willy Ambaka have not resumed training and are uncertain of joining Paul Murunga's side in the World Series tour.
According to the team manager, the Shujaa team for Hong Kong and Singapore World Sevens Series will be named on Wednesday.
The team have had a slow start in the World Sevens Series this season, recording poor performances in the most recent showings - Las Vegas and Vancouver.
Shujaa have had a financial crisis due to lack of a sponsor as Kenya Airways terminated their contract in November 2016.
Former Shujaa skipper Andrew Amonde is one of the senior players that have resumed training [Photo: Courtesy]
However, with the new management in the KRU under the newly elected chairman Oduor Gangla, the union will pursue to solve the issues that face the Kenya 7s team.
"The Union's main problem has been its financial account. The team has massively grown but the funding has not been there," said Gangla.
"We have just come into the office and our first priority is to engage the sponsors and the Ministry of Sports to see how best we can work together to bring rugby to where it's supposed to be. But I am confident we will bring sanity back into the game," he added.
Shujaa will seek to redeem their pride and evade relegation as they are 14th in the World Series standings, just four points above relegation.
Head coach Paul Murunga, nonetheless, is optimistic that the team will not be relegated from the World Series.
"I am confident in the players that they will deliver and help us avoid relegation," said Murunga.