ZRU happy with successful hosting of Olympic qualifiers
Innocent Kurira, Online Writer
THE Zimbabwe Rugby Union (ZRU) says they are happy to have successfully hosted the 2023 African Men’s Sevens Rugby Olympics Qualifying Championships despite Zimbabwe failing to qualify for the Games set for Paris, France next year.
Kenya earned their place at the Paris 2024 Olympics by winning the tournament played in Harare. A 17-12 win over pre-tournament favourites South Africa enabled Kenya to become the ninth men’s team to confirm its participation in next year’s Games.
For South Africa and Uganda, who finished third after a 24-12 win over Zimbabwe in the bronze medal match, the dream of competing at the Olympics is not over as both have qualified for the Olympic Repechage tournament.
Kenya joined France, New Zealand, Argentina, Fiji, Australia, Uruguay, Ireland and the United States as confirmed Olympics participants.
The final three places will be decided via the Oceania and Asia qualification tournaments and the Olympic Repechage tournament.
ZRU vice president Martin Shone said the two-day tournament was a huge success.
“As ZRU we are pleased to have staged a successful tournament. Every country we had has expressed satisfaction with the reception and general running of the tournament. It’s sad the Cheetahs could not progress or win the tournament but we are happy with the support we got from the nation. I felt the boys put in a good fight,” said Shone.