The Kenya women's rugby sevens team failed to secure a spot in the 2023 HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series following a loss to China in the 2022 World Rugby Sevens Challenger Series.
Lionesses fail to book a spot in 2023 sevens series
Lionesses had lost to Japan in the semi-final
The Lionesses lost 31-5 to China on Sunday, August 14. The loss means the girls have to wait longer to gain core status in World Rugby Women's Sevens Series.
Kenya started out brilliantly attacking from the get-go. However, China managed to score the first try through Yan Meiling who smartly used a rack to her advantage.
Tries from Sun Yue and Gu Yaoyao put the Chinese 19-0 up at the break and they wrapped up third place with second-half scores from Wang Xiao and another for Yue.
Despite the fourth place finish, Lionesses Head Coach Dennis Mwanja paid a glowing tribute to his players who represented the nation in Santiago, Chile.
The former Shujaa captain said, “This tournament was a good outing for us. The girls got to play and gauge themselves against very worthy opponents. We all believe this is the level Kenya Lionesses should be playing, and how we pray we could get more exposure.”
He talked about the team’s spirit and determination, saying, “They were so determined to get to the series, having faith that it would open doors for greater opportunities. When they lost, they did not lose lying down and this is a major take home. “
Mwanja concluded his statements by insisting more needs to be done to help grow rugby in the country and help establish Lionesses as a force to be reckoned with.
"I know that with more support, the Lionesses can scale the heights of global rugby but this can only happen if there’s more women’s rugby being played across the board, ” he concluded.