Festus Shiasi opens up on stiff competition for places at Kenya Sevens

Festus Shiasi (L) with Sports CS Ababu Namwamba after Shujaa qualified for the Olympics. Photo ||MOYASA

RUGBY Festus Shiasi opens up on stiff competition for places at Kenya Sevens

Mark Kinyanjui 12:44 - 28.02.2024

Shiasi was left out of the recent Shujaa squad for the upcoming Uruguay leg of the Challenger Series, but will be itching for a return to the side as soon as possible.

Kenya Sevens’ Festus Shiasi has opened up on the tough competition for places in the side under the stewardship of Kevin ‘Bling’ Wambua.

Shiasi, who was red-carded during the opening Challenger Sevens Series Dubai Tour in January, has been left out of the latest squad for the Uruguay leg, with Wambua keen on seeing what some of his other options can do.

With the side intending to return to the top of HSBC SVNS as well as do well at the forthcoming Olympics, Shiasi has revealed how tough it is to earn a place in the side, with everyone keen to impress the coach well enough to be selected.

“We have a wide pool of good players. There is still competition,” Shiasi told Pulse Sports after KCB beat Kenya Harlequin last weekend, a match in which he scored a magnificent try.

“The forthcoming tour has some changes and we accept the decisions because competition is very stiff,” the former Strathmore Leos center said.

Shiasi also opened up on the red card he received that ruled him out of taking part in the semi-finals and finals in Dubai.

“It was a good experience. Unfortunately, I was red carded, so I did not play most of the game but I enjoyed the win, but bottom line, it was a victory and a good experience.”

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Shiasi will be seeking a return to the team as soon as possible and has revealed the targets he has set for himself.

“We have to win in Uruguay and then go to Madrid to try and get back into the HSBC series, and we have to do as well as we can at the Olympics in August.”

Holding the pole position with 20 points, Kenya has a slender lead over Chile, setting up a thrilling contest in Montevideo as they aim to extend their lead and fortify their dominance in the series.

Shujaa are placed in Pool A, where they will compete against Tonga, Georgia, and Portugal setting the stage for what promises to be a thrilling contest.