The Rwanda Cricket Association (RCA) has started preparations of the annual Genocide Memorial tournament, Kwibuka T20 Tournament, slated from June 4-13 in Kigali. This comes after the Ministry of Sports, in a communique issued to the Cricket governing body on Tuesday, April 20, allowed national cricket teams, men and women, to resume training for their upcoming competitions. “RCA believes that cricket is a non-contact sport, with very low risks of exposure, and that it can be played as safely as many other sporting activities,” RCA said after getting the green light to resume cricket activities. Held annually since 2014, the tournament is the flagship event of the women’s cricket calendar in Rwanda through which the cricket community contribute to the country’s healing process following the atrocities committed during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi. Times Sport understands that the national women cricket team will start training next week ahead of the tournament. Besides earning ICC ranking points given its full WT20I status, the event is also a good platform for teams to assess themselves ahead of the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Africa Qualifier to be hosted in Botswana at the beginning of September. Kwibuka Women’s T20 is one of the international tournaments recognized by the International Cricket Council (ICC), meaning that teams will get ranking points based on how they perform in the tournament. Rwanda now ranks seventh in Africa and RCA Secretary-General Julius Mbaraga told Times Sport that Rwanda will be playing the upcoming tournament with a target to improve its performance on the international stage while the performance also affects the country’s global cricket rankings. “The goal is to improve Rwanda’s performances across the men, women and the Under 19 national teams. We are aware that improving performance requires you to win and if you win the tournament, you go up in the ICC rankings,” Mbaraga said. Rwanda’s women Cricket team could find themselves locking horns with other eight teams that were invited to participate in the tournament including Namibia, Zimbabwe (second in Africa), Nigeria, Botswana, Malawi and three former champions in Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania. The tournament will, according to the Cricket Association, take place in respect to all existing Covid-19 Standard Operating procedures in Rwanda including social distancing, use of masks, temperature checks and testing, sanitizers for players, crew and equipment.