Kenya's bid to host rugby world cup qualifiers ignored, find out why

The African qualifiers will take place in France from July 1-10

NAIROBI, KENYA - JUNE 30: In this handout image provided by the APO Group, Kenya's Darwin Mukidza takes a conversion as Kenya Simbas beat Zimbabwe Sables 45-36 during the Rugby World Cup qualifier and Rugby Africa Gold Cup match between Kenya and Zimbabwe at RFUEA Ground on June 30, 2018 in Nairobi, Kenya. (Photo by APO Group via Getty Images)

Kenya's bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup qualifiers (RWCQ) was snubbed after it was announced that France will host the competition. This will be the first time in the history of African rugby that the Rugby Africa Cup will be held outside Africa.

The move angered not only Kenyans but Africans as a whole with many questioning the transparency of Rugby Afrique, the continental governing body in charge of organising Rugby tournaments for its 39 members.

Kenya and Zimbabwe had put in bids which the continental body described as "strong", but it decided to award the hosting rights to France.

"We did request Rugby Africa to revisit their decision," said Namibia rugby president Corrie Mensah said, but "the outcome was to remain with France as host."

"Our main goal is to keep growing and progressing and taking our rightful place on the international stage," Rugby Africa told BBC Sport Africa in a statement.

"In collaboration with our members and partners, Rugby Africa needs to invent new ways and create new opportunities to grow its revenue and redistribute it in African rugby," read the statement in part.

An official sponsor of Rugby Africa, APO, added to the growing criticism with its chairman and founder Nicolas Pompigne-Mognard saying: "We believe the decision is not in the best interest of African rugby. One can only wonder whether there are other interests at play."

Will Kenya manage to qualify for the first time in history?

Kenya is among eight countries playing in the 2022 Africa Cup in France from July 1 with the winners qualifying for the World Cup and the runners-up entering an inter-continent repechage tournament.

The repechage tournament is a one-off event to determine the final team to qualify for the World Cup. Kenya came tantalisingly close to qualification for RWC 2019, only to miss out in the repechage.

From July 1-10, the teams will compete in a tournament in two French cities, Aix-en-Provence and Marseille.

The Simbas are scheduled to meet age old rivals Uganda cranes in the quarterfinal of the RWCQ on either July 1st or 2nd.

Should they secure a victory in this match, they will proceed to face either Senegal or Algeria in the semifinal on July 6. The final of the qualifiers will take place on July 10.

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