Rwanda national men’s beach volleyball team goes into this year’s CAVB beach Championships seeking to book a ticket to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. The tournament is slated for May 3-9 in Tunisia, and is the third round of qualifiers.
The team departs for Tunis on Monday ahead of Wednesday’s big kick-off. Rwanda will compete against, Kenya, Egypt, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Burundi, Gambia, Ivory Coast, Angola, Gambia, Morocco, Mozambique and hosts Tunisia.
“We are motivated for the tournament. We want to qualify, and I believe we can achieve it. We will be up against strong teams in Africa, but they also know that we are equally strong,” team captain Marshal Pierre Kwizera told Times Sport on Saturday.
The 29–year old added that, “The players are in good shape and ready for the challenge with a target of improving our performance, we are determined to qualify.”
The team, that comprises of Olivier Ntagengwa, Patrick Kavalo, Flavien Ndamukunda and Pierre Marshal Kwizera, has been undergoing intensive training in Rubavu District on the shores of Lake Kivu.
The winner will qualify for the Rio Olympics, while the first and second runners up will join other teams from other continents for the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships, whose dates and venue are yet to be confirmed.
Rwandan women failed to qualify directly for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games after losing to Egypt 2-1 in the final of the CAVB Beach Volleyball Championships in Abuja, Nigeria, two weeks ago.
But there is a second chance for the Rwandan quartet to reach Copacabana Beach as they qualified for the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Continental Cup where the winners and runners-up will earn their country the final two berths at Rio 2016.