Zimbabwe Sevens rugby team head coach Gilbert Nyamutsamba has rallied his charges to qualify for the 2013 Sevens Rugby World Cup in Russia and prove that their qualification three years ago was not a fluke.
Report by Daniel Nhakaniso
The Cheetahs have wonderful memories of the Sevens Rugby World Cup having qualified for three editions in 1991, 2001 and 2009 of the five tournaments held since 1993. Three years ago in Dubai, the Cheetahs achieved their highest ever finishing, ending a respectable 17th at the 34-team showpiece and most important winning the bowl trophy.
The Nyamutsamba-coached side will be aiming to make their fourth appearance at the tournament during the regional qualifiers which take place in Rabat from September 29-30.
“It’s very important for us to make sure that we qualify for the Sevens
Rugby World Cup in Russia to prove that our qualification in 2009 was not a fluke. We have to show that we have earned our position among the big boys in World Sevens Rugby and we can compete at the highest level against the top teams. We have seen the benefits of competing at the highest level,” said Nyamutsamba.
He said he was happy with his team’s preparations, adding that their participation at the Middleburg Sevens in South Africa this weekend would give them the ideal preparatory platform for the qualifiers.
“It’s very important to be well prepared for the qualifiers and we are happy that we will get some valuable game time at the Middleburg Sevens tournament in South Africa. Hopefully, it will give us the momentum heading into the qualifiers where we hope to do well,” he said.
The Cheetahs will leave for Morocco on Thursday and will, for the first time, be accompanied by the Zimbabwe Under-19 and Under-16 teams, the national women’s team (Pangolins) and the development team (Goshawks).
Cheetahs: Fortune Chipendu, Jacques Leitao (Captain), Njabulo Ndlovu, Justin Coles, Lucky Sithole, Kelvin Magunje, Daniel Hondo, Tangai Nemadire, Jonathan McWade, Wesley Mbanje, Tafadzwa Chitokwindo
Goshawks: Lenience Tambwera, Steven Hunduza, Scotty Jones (Captain), Farai Jijita, Lloyd Machanjaira, Japhet Ndebele, Kuda Chiwanza, Regis Mutangadura, Lungile Tshuma, Simbarashe Chirimuuta, Tatenda Mutataguta, Tatenda Chigumbura