Rugby senior national team coach Kabo Batsile has hailed his team’s performance at the just ended Rugby Sevens World Cup qualifying tournament in Uganda.
During a four-day tournament, the Vultures played three games, losing twice and winning once.

Vultures lost 52-0 against Madagascar in their first match before losing 26-7 against Mauritius and winning 17-15 against Cameroon.

Batsile told Gazette Sport that despite the team’s failure to secure a spot at the upcoming sevens tournament to be held in South Africa there are positives to build around.

“We learned that we should not change the way we play regardless of the score even after conceding a try because this caused the team to make many mistakes that rose the score against Madagascar,” added Batsile.

He highlighted that the team started the tournament slowly and grew with it.
“The team needs to be composed to international friendly tournaments before major tournaments like World Cup, Commonwealth and Olympics,” said team coach.

The Vultures’ failure to qualify for the Sevens World Cup also means the team has failed to qualify for the Commonwealth Games. This now means Uganda, Zimbabwe and Kenya have sealed their qualification to participate at the two tournaments.

Batsile also stressed the need to have support from all stakeholders be it access to gym and access to funds.

Meanwhile, Botswana Rugby Association Vice President technical Elijah Kokoro said they were meant to play three extra games on Sunday to determine final tournament ranking but the games were cancelled due to heavy rains that stalled the schedule for three hours.
“We really put together what we could, considering the fact that we can only plan for what we afford. We gave our boys game time during our local sevens series though it was not enough. Before coming to Uganda, we had participated in the Zambezi 7’s tournament in March in Harare which is a high profile annual tournament,” said Kokoro.

He said their wish was to have taken part in three to four tournaments outside Botswana, to give the right exposure to the boys but that did not materialize.

“All is not lost, the group that we have are young boys and we need to nurture them, give them more game time locally and regionally to build their experience and this takes time and it does not come on a short cut basis. On a positive note, our boys have tasted the bigger stage in this tournament and this will build their character,” stated Kokoro.

In February this year Rugby Africa held a Southern Africa Sevens’ qualifying tournament which was held in Lesotho at Lesotho Defense Force Air Base stadium and Botswana managed to seal their qualification into the next round.

On the other hand, The Association Secretary General Boitshoko Tsiane said this year they were only given P600 000 by Botswana National Sports Commission (BNSC) and 35 000 Euros by the World Rugby for all BRU activities.