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Kenya Lionesses squad to World Cup, Commonwealth qualifiers named
By Eric Njiru | Wed 13 Sep, 2017 10:42

The Kenya Lionesses squad to take part at the Africa Cup Sevens in Tunisia on Saturday, September 16 and 17 has been named by head coach Kevin Wambua. 

Northern Suburbs star Philadelphia Olando will skipper the side to the competition with Catherine Abila being a non-traveling sub. Head coach Kevin Wambua hands a debut to Judith Ouma.

There are four changes from the side that reached cup quarters at the Women's Sevens Series qualifiers as Linet Moraa joins Abila, Irene Otieno and Prisca Nyerere in the NTS. 

Rachel Mbogo makes her return since Rio 2016 while Janet Okello is also back while Cynthia Camila returns for the first time since Dubai 7s.

Others named in the squad include Sheila Chajira of Homeboyz ladies, Sinaida Aura, Janet Owino, Stacy Awour and Celestine Masinde. 

Kenya is grouped in Pool B of the tournament together with Zimbabwe, Senegal and Madagascar as defending champions South Africa headline Pool A which also features Uganda, Morocco and hosts Tunisia.

The winner will gain automatic entry into the 2018 Women’s Rugby World Cup Sevens.

While only the winner of the Rugby Africa Women’s Sevens Championship will progress to San Francisco next year, the top-two Commonwealth countries will qualify for the rugby sevens tournament at the 2018 Commonwealth Games.

A dominant South Africa have competed at the two Women’s RWC Sevens tournaments held to date, at the inaugural event in 2009 and again in 2013, and will start as favourites to complete a hat-trick of appearances by qualifying as African champions.

The Bok Women’s Sevens have an impressive track record in the Rugby Africa Sevens, as they won back-to-back titles from 2013 to 2016, after being crowned the champions in 2011 and from 2006 to 2008.

In 2016, Kenya finished second after losing 22-17 to South Africa in Zimbabwe.  Zim finished third with a 24-10 win over Uganda.

Sixteen will teams play at the women's World Cup Sevens. Four teams automatically qualified by reaching the semifinals at the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens. Additionally, the top four teams not already qualified from the 2016-17 Women's World Sevens Series also qualified. The remaining eight places will be filled via continental qualifiers.

Squad
1.Phila Olando 2.Sheila Chajira 3.Judith Auma 4.Sinaida Aura 5.Celestine Masinde 6.Cynthia Camila 7.Doreen Remor 8.Janet Okello 9.Grace Adhiambo 10.Rachel Mbogo 11.Janet Owino 12.Stacy Awor.

Eric Njiru
eric@ragahouse.com 0726205521
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