This year presents the Rugby Sevens Cranes with the tightest of schedules they have ever had to deal with. The World Series Qualifiers in Hong Kong kick is their first mission before heading to Australia for the Commonwealth Games, all in a space of nine days.
After Australia, the double African champions will grace the grandest stage of sevens in shape of the World Cup in San Francisco, USA in July. With such a tasking calendar, the side’s management are forced to think out of the box unless they just want to make numbers at the three showpieces.
As the Nile Special Premiership took center stage over the weekend, coach Tolbert Onyango’s charges were in Jinja, 84km away from the city center, for a three-day residential camp experiencing the vigorous routines of a professional rugby player.
Residing at Arise African Christian Guest House and training at Dam Waters Grounds like they did last year at around the same time, Onyango has picked positives from the camp and rated it as a success.
“The new boys have gelled in properly and there is healthy competition in the squad,” Onyango told Daily Monitor.
The camp also presented Onyango with a good opportunity to work on different aspects of the game without too much distractions as the players found themselves around unfamiliar surroundings.
“Camp was about getting ourselves up to speed with game requirements. Structure, conditioning and team building,” said Onyango. The team also partook in agility, blip and endurance tests.
Uganda are pooled in Pool D along with Fiji, Wales and Sri Lanka for the Commonwealth Games. They will also tussle it out with the likes of Ireland, Georgia, German, Japan, Hong Kong, Zimbabwe, Cook Islands, Papa New Guinea, Jamaica, Chile and Uruguay for the sole spot as a core status side in the HSBC World Rugby Series in Hong Kong.
Players who attended Jinja camp:
Ivan Magomu, Marvin Odongo , Desire Ayera, Adrian Kasito , Timothy Mudoola , Solomon Okia, Kevin Keremundu , Joseph Aredo , Byron Oketayot , Aaron Ofoyrwoth, James Ijongat , Alhajji Manano , Baron Kasozi, Michael Wokorach, Lawrence Sebuliba