KAMPALA- In November during the trophy handover to 15-time champions Hima Heathens, Uganda Rugby Union (URU) boss Godwin Kayangwe drew applauds when he said the 2020/2021 Nile Stout Rugby Premiership season would commence on January 23.
It is a week away from the said date but no official communication has been made on the league’s resumption.
“We have not been informed on when the league is starting,” Stanbic Black Pirates’ captain Dennis Etuket told Daily Monitor.
The previous season was suspended in March 2020 as Covid-19 raged, but it never resumed until Hima Heathens were awarded the bragging rights in November as they had been leading with more than three quarters of the games played.
URU country development manager Yayiro Kasasa admits the league should be on its way but a few Covid-19 related hiccups have stalled its return.
“Since sports was given a go ahead, we were given standard operating procedures (SOPS) to adhere to but we have not been certified to resume,” he told this paper.
Under normal conditions the league was to start in November, a month after the Uganda Cup. After the league, players get a month’s breather before the National Sevens Circuit takes centre stage.
The customary URU calendar will have to be rejigged now that no rugby has been played in 10 months.
The challenge of meeting required SOPs remains the wall between the league and its resumption. Unless all the mandatory boxes are ticked, rugby might have to wait until the Covid-19 threat is wiped off the earth’s surface.
dbugembe@ug. nationmedia. com