Tunisia second row and captain Saif Bousaada left Kenyan rugby journalists sympathizing as he narrated on what contributed to their 100-10 loss to Kenya Simbas in the Africa Gold Cup on Saturday, July 8, 2017, in Nairobi.
Bousaada, who plays his club rugby for an English side, blamed Tunisian rugby union for lack of support as they recorded their second defeat in a row.
“What didn’t happen is clear, we played with our second team because most of our first team play in the French league and refused to come to play for reasons I can’t mention now”
The century defeat came two weeks after they lost 53-7 to Namibia. In Nairobi, they managed only two unconverted tries.
“Before we started the competition we knew we would have tough matches against Namibia, Kenya and Uganda. We have to fight for our flag; our point is to stay in Africa 1A which allows us to take part in World Cup qualifiers”
Tunisia will take on Uganda, Zimbabwe and Senegal in their last three matches with Bousaada saying they target to bag at least two wins.
“We will try to win our last two games and hopefully our first team agrees to come play.”
Bousaada was particularly pleased by the kind of support Kenyans gave their team a thing he says never happens in Tunisia. He said in Tunisia they only receive under 150 fans on match days.
“Rugby is very boring in Tunisia, we didn’t play any friendly game, we’ve been working hard but that was not enough. Some of our players didn’t play any game throughout the season. I play in English league then I came and tried my best but five players can’t win against 15 players,”
Tunisia conceded a record 15 tries and 11 conversions which leave them at the bottom of Africa Gold Cup standings.
“Kenya was very strong but not as professional as Namibia because we played two or three attacks and we scored twice”
“Tunisia Rugby Union should support rugby if they are serious. People laugh about Kenya because they don’t know them and have never been here but when you come here and see all this you feel like you want to play rugby, you feel like you want to go ahead never mind if you break your shoulder or head because you support from people and country. You get nothing in Tunisia.”
Tunisia’s next assignment is against Uganda in Kampala on Saturday, July 15.
“We will try to stay in group 1A, I try to play for myself and country and I don’t care what people do. Any fault that happens it’s not my problem. I will play for myself and then go to English league but am not bothered by what happens in Tunisia because I have been playing since I was 10 and nothing changed yet,” concluded Bousaada.