KAMPALA. The Rugby Cranes landed in San Francisco, USA on Monday, got some rest and were ready for their first sessions with four days to their Rugby Sevens World Cup against Samoa on Saturday at the AT&T arena.
Playing at any kind of World Cup comes with different tests but some remain constant.
Debutants have in many cases ended up victims of stage fright. The Rugby Sevens Cranes have already played a stage of the World Cup’s caliber as an invitational side at the World Series, Commonwealth games.
In Samoa, Uganda come up against a side coached by Sir Gordon Tietjens, the most successful coach in sevens history with two World Cups and 12 World Series championships.
That kind of CV sends shock waves into any opponent’s camp but Cranes coach Tolbert Onyango is preaching belief before he comes up against a man he can gladly refer to as a role model.
“We must believe in ourselves, keep to our game plan and be able to defend wide in an organised manner. We have worked pretty hard on the defending side and with better conditioning of the players. We must be very alert on countering Samoa’s physicality in our opening game. This is a knockout and anything can happen when you plan well, Onyango told Daily Monitor.
Uganda boosts a young squad that has garnered experience over the past two years. Playing at events like the Oktoberfest 7s, Victorial Falls 7s, Commonwealth Games, Olympics qualifiers, Cape Town and Dubai legs of the World Series and the World Series qualifier in Hong Kong twice.
Rugby world cup
Samoa vs. Uganda, 10:29am