Gidza lauds Cheetahs camp

HARARE - Zambezi Cheetahs coach Gilbert Nyamutsamba feels there is renewed interest in the shorter version of the game which will help the team improve in this crucial year.

The Zimbabwe Sevens national rugby side is currently on a high as they have started preparations for the 2018 Rugby World Cup Sevens finals to be held in San Francisco, United States in July.

The team is also set to take part in the Hong Kong Sevens tournament in April where qualification to be a core member of the HSBC World Sevens Series will be up for grabs.

Zimbabwe secured their berth at both tournaments after reaching the final of the Africa Cup Sevens tournament in Uganda last year where they lost to the hosts.

Last weekend, the Zambezi Cheetahs held their first training camp which generated a lot of interest from new players that want to take up the Sevens game.

With 2018 set to be a make-or-break year for the side, Nyamutsamba is pleased with the response from his players.     

“The camp went well. We had a good turnout. We had about 32 players turning up and of those 32, at least 26 were new players we had never seen or worked with,” the Zambezi Cheetahs coach told the Daily News.

“That was the whole idea of the camp to actually identify talent and that objective was met. Our other objective was to meet coaches and have discussions and equip the coaches with the sort of expectations that we have so that they are able to help players get ready before they come out for trials with the Cheetahs.

“I’m hoping with new players that are interested in playing the Sevens game, the current players that we have will see that there is a bit of pressure for places in the teams. This can only help us build a better team.”

Next month, the Zambezi Cheetahs are taking their preparations across the Limpopo where Nyamutsamba hopes to be able to unearth more players that can bolster his squad.

“Then moving forward, we are going to hold several camps and the next one is going to be in South Africa on the weekend of February 11 where again we are looking at player and talent identification,” he said.

“As far as preparations are concerned regarding our next tournaments, I think we still have a lot to do judging by our performance in out last tournament in Uganda.”

Speaking with the Daily News on Sunday, Zambezi Cheetahs captain Hilton Mudariki said the side is looking forward to continue with their success this year. 

“Massive year the Zambezi Cheetahs. So much to look forward to! The squad is definitely up for this year as I said so much to look forward to. A lot of the boys will be looking to put their hands up for selection,” he said.

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