Over the weekend Kenya entertained a host of teams who came forth to play the Safari Sevens which formed the foundation of one of the blossoming sides of the game in the IRB Series. Most of the Kenyans would applaud this which I would to given the height it has taken the game to.
But I believe we are becoming complacent in the event.
Why do we need to keep inviting sides which we know all too well we are going to beat? Why have the Emerging Boks from South Africa instead of engaging the Springboks proper? We can not claim to be competitive when playing lower cadre teams.
Secondly I think most of the corporate sponsorship which came by was misplaced. Everyone wants to the 'official' this or the 'official' that...there was almost Official Air-supply for the Tournament . What these corporates need to do is negotiate with the KRFU and see how they can commit to a certain aspect of the tournament. Say for instance, sponsor air tickets for visiting teams. This way we can see more competition and meaningful sponsorship.
Thirdly, I think it's about time, the organisers looked into expanding the venues to accomodate bigger crowds and also improve the surrounding infrastructure. The chaos that characterises the venue and the roads leading to the venue are despicable. If the KRFU is to hope to host the Safari Sevens as part of the IRB circuit, they must look into this.
This leads me to ask if they are waiting for a miracle or have they beckoned the IRB for inclusion in the circuit. Though we are some way into the top 4 teams of the IRB Sevens series, we can start working towards inclusion. This can be justified with the continued improvement in the teams' performance and the passion of the players. We can't say we have a local professional league yet to develop the talent needed for the same but we are some way into it, that's KRFU's job again. The lads need to become proper professionals and teams can work around developing the game by having 7s teams in their roster.
That much said, we need to look beyond pleasing local fans and having one drunken weekend. As Tall said, the challenge now for the team is maintaining the performances we have seen in the last 2 seasons. It will be harder now since teams will be on the look-out for us.
Over to you, Mr Omwela !