Silverbacks step up preps for Division 1C

The national rugby team (Silverbacks) qualified for the Division 1C despite losing to DR Congo (9-12) in the finals of the Africa Rugby Division 2 East (formerly Central) tournament at the Amahoro Stadium on Friday.
Scrumhalf Patrick Ikorukwishaka lifts the trophy as the team celebrates the final (Stephen Kalimba)
Scrumhalf Patrick Ikorukwishaka lifts the trophy as the team celebrates the final (Stephen Kalimba)

Friday results

Rwanda 9-12 DRC

The national rugby team (Silverbacks) qualified for the Division 1C despite losing to DR Congo (9-12) in the finals of the Africa Rugby Division 2 East (formerly Central) tournament at the Amahoro Stadium on Friday.

Tharcisse Kamanda, the General Secretary of the Rwanda Rugby Federation (RRF) said it was a moment of joy proceeding to the tier 1C and that the federation had to prepare for the bigger stage.

“We are going to try harder to handle the tougher teams, our players weren't very fit, you saw how DRC outmuscled us, and we have to condition our selves better physically and mentally,” said Kamanda.

Division 1C includes Mauritius, Nigeria, Cameroon and Morocco. The DRC Leopards stay in Division 2 D as they are not full members despite winning the final.

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Silverbacks celebrate with the runners up trophy. (S. Kalimba)

The first half belonged to the visitors with full back Ndangi Bangabasi scoring the first try and converting it before hooker Kanana Ntabwe made it two. Silverbacks responded well with Carlos Simbi making a drop goal before half time. In the second half, the Silverbacks were the better team coming close on a couple of times but they only managed two penalties scored by Jean Paul Hajali.

For the third place, Burundi was awarded bronze. They had earlier lost 6-3 in a friendly game to first timers Lesotho Stallions who were disqualified after failing to make it in time to play their group game with DRC on Wednesday after missing a flight.

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