Kenya sevens head coach Innocent Simiyu has his eyes firmly set on the upcoming busy schedule for the team which has the HSBC world 7s series,the commonwealth games and the 7s Rugby world cup.
In an exclusive interview with Impala Saracens, Simiyu revealed his plans for the team as well as the kind of support that he requires from the teams management in order to perform well.
The former Impala Saracens star believes that players welfare should be improved and wants the team to start off their training session in time.
”I have four critical things.First,improve player welfare.We need to work on their package and pay them over a longer preparations period. We need to have a full complement of the management team before we begin Pre-season.This will enable a full and proper season review and plan for the whole coming season. The pre-season preparations that include match practice tournaments must start on time.We can’t gamble again, he said.
Fill vacant positions
The team had to do without an assistant coach the entire season and the strength and conditioning coach left the team before the mid season. Namcos feels that this time round the team should fill the positions in time and they will be able to do reviews and prepare the team well for the upcoming season. The coach added that correct equipment should be available in time to avoid last season’s situation where they had to depend on tournaments balls.
“Once we fill the vacant positions,we will restructure according to our season review.We will upskill staff continuously to ensure delivery to players.There will be rigorous ongoing review. Physio,gym and rugby equipment need to be onsite before we start.I will detail precisely what we need at the minimum.Last year we were depending on tournament balls for training,we ran out of supplements and so on.”
The former Kenyan International says the 2016/17 season was to set the foundation and he has assured that he will delivery good results. He also lauded the fans that kept support the team throughout the season.
“It is easy to look at the results,read opinions in the ‘popular press’ and assume things have imploded.I assure that we are on the right track and have a winning formula.We will deliver. Key for us this season was to lay the foundation in terms of culture,structures and strategies that would allow the Kenya brand of rugby to leap forward.We have that foundation and hope that he preparations will be seamless because some aspects are outside the immediate control of the team. We thank all the fans especially the ones who take their time to travel with the team.We really appreciate.Your interest in the performance drives us to work harder and smarter to achieve more.”
Kenya 7s picked up 63 points in the whole season.