The National Rugby League (NRL) promises a new era

MUTARE The NRL president and recently appointed national manager of the Zimbabwe Rugby Union (ZRU), Noddy Kanyangarara, said he was optimistic about the path this year's league had taken.

“The clubs are participating fully in our various matches. We are optimistic that sponsorship to assist clubs on overheads will be attained by mid-season. However, on the most imperative issue of remuneration for players, we hope to see to it happening in the near future, as it will assist to prevent the exodus of our talent to South Africa and overseas,” he said

Kanyangarara said the country’s top flight rugby league had been battling with lack of sponsorship to professionally run the league, but this year’s season, already on course, will be running until November joining the 15s and seven aside fixtures.

Kanyangarara said: I am impressed by the new league affiliates, Air Force of Zimbabwe from Gweru and Mutare Sports Club (MSC). The two clubs have brought back rugby activities in Midlands and Manicaland, respectively.

“There is a lot of generated excitement from this year’s season and it must be because of the new entries, he said.

Kanyangarara added: All clubs are promising to try, by all possible means, to attend all matches and we really hope to get the sponsorship deal to enable us to assist all the clubs with transport and accommodation expenses to avoid unnecessary cancellation of matches.”

He said the future of rugby in Zimbabwe was very bright. “First, it was the Zimbabwe sevens team that was for the first time invited to the prestigious Hong Kong tournament in March and now the increase in affiliates in the league.” The Sables (Zimbabwe 15-aside team) are scheduled to play in this year’s African Cup at the end of June, in which Zimbabwe will host the Pool C matches. Zimbabwe has been pitted against regional rivals Namibia, Madagascar and Botswana. The Sables have eight international friendlies lined up in their preparation for the African Cup, mostly with South African provincial teams.

This will probably be one of their busiest calendars in more than seven years. Kanyangara said: Extensive talent scouting would be done for the Sables team through provincial select and national select tournaments, so that a strong national side would be built without prejudice, as alleged in the past that there was constrained selection favouring Harare and Bulawayo players.

He added: The tournament will also provide the opportunity to confirm the much held view that Zimbabwe’s rugby is now on the resurgence after going through a period of gradual decline. Zimbabwe last qualified for 1987 and 1991 World Cup finals and has since then failed to make the cut, often falling to Morocco, Ivory Coast and Namibia, over the past years.

Post published in: Rugby

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *