The Kenya Lionesses suffered a shocking 27:15 defeat by Madagascar in the first of two Rugby Africa Women’s Cups held at Nyayo Stadium on Saturday 3rd July.
Madagascar entered the country on Wednesday evening June 30th with the aim of winning both games and improving the rugby World Cup rankings.
The win came as a surprise to many, including Makis head coach Rafalimanana Joseph Berthin. “The victory came as a surprise to us all; we know the history of the Kenyan team and their profile. They are more physical and athletic and therefore the win against them was surprising. “
The last time these two teams faced Kenya they won 35-5 in the opening game of a qualifying tournament for the Rugby World Cup, which also served as the Rugby Africa Women’s Cup. The tournament took place in South Africa in August 2019.
Berthin believes the only difference between then and now is how they interact as a team. “Since that loss we have become more of a family. We are closely connected and the players play for each other, ”says Berthin.
In most African nations, the sevens and fifteen teams are more intertwined, and Madagascar is no different. Their squad of sevens qualified for the Olympic delusion in Monaco last month but did not qualify for the global flagship set to be played in Tokyo, Japan later this month.
“Our failed Olympic qualification triggered a kind of competition between the team of seven and the team of fifteen. What we see is that the team of fifteen is trying as hard as possible to reach the same heights as the team of sevens in Monaco, ”added Berthin.
Madagascar will now try to make two of two in the second game of the Rugby Africa Women’s Cup on Sunday 11 July at Nyayo National Stadium against the Kenya Lionesses.
Distributed by the APO Group on behalf of the Kenya Rugby Union (KRU).
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July 05, 2021 at 6:24 am GMT
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