Up to 25 players passed the initial test as Prescott Cup playing schools assembled at Lenana School on Sunday for trials for a place in an allstar team to take part in Craven Week in South Africa in 2019.
The players were picked from five schools that attended; hosts Lenana School, Alliance High, Ofafa Jericho, Sunshine Secondary and Laiser Hill Academy.
According to the Secretary of the Prescott Cup committee Kombo Kikechi, further trials will be held at convenient times in weeks to come to give chances to the schools that did not attend the first trial on Sunday.
"There is a lot of raw talent from the schools and we were very impressed. The boys showed a lot of hunger and are all keen to make it to the final list. We had close to 40 boys from the schools that attended and 25 have made the initial list,"
"We will continue to conduct the trials in weeks to give a chance to those that did not participate. Eventually we will have 40 players then scale it down to 30. Five of those will be non-travelling"
"Those in the final list will be introduced to strength and condition as well as elaborate coaching that will fine tune the backs as well as the forwards." he added
Kenya's junior coach Paul Odera and former Kenya half back Kenny Andola made an appearance during the trials. Odera had this to say;
"The talent I saw there was amazing and if this is the kind of players that we have in schools then Kenya has a great future,"
He however had some reservations that he would want the Prescott Cup committee to attend to going forward.
"Yes I saw lots of talent but the committee needs to come up with a better way of selection. There needs to be a clear cut criteria for this to be effective and once that process is done it would be important to know who will take charge in terms of coaching while laying down the long term plan."
A trip to Craven Week in 2019 is the end game of the Prescott Cup that is under the sponsorship of Homeboyz Entertainment Ltd from 2018 for the next three years to a tune of Kshs 7.5 million.
The Craven Week is an annual rugby union tournament organized for schoolboys in the Republic of South Africa. It started in July 1964. Western Province beat last year’s finalists KwaZulu-Natal 47–8 in the main match to win the 2018 edition at Paarl on the eve of the Prescott Cup trials at Lenana to reclaim the title they lost to Golden Lions in Johannesburg last year.