Lack of incentives sniffles Young Sables

THE Zimbabwe Rugby Union (ZRU) shot themselves in the foot due to their failure to provide incentives to the Young Sables side during the recently concluded Africa Rugby Barthes Trophy, which was won by Kenya.

Hosting the continental cup brought about significant benefits and numerous advantages due to the passionate and enthusiastic support of local rugby fans.

The Machinery Exchange Stadium at Harare Sports Club was packed to the rafters with fans rallying behind their team in all three matches.

Young Sables head coach Shaun de Souza, who missed out on a third straight Barthes Trophy victory, pointed out the lack of incentives as a major draw back.

De Souza was aplopetic with anger.

“We need to encourage these boys. “They have been working hard since November last year and this was their third attempt at the trophy, but they have nothing to show for it,” De Souza fumed.

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“Their parents have made sacrifices and these boys deserve recognition. Let us show some decency and give them the reward they deserve.”

ZRU president Aaron Jani said the union wants to open opportunities for the players rather than pay them.

“We are creating much better opportunities than the physical allowances they will get and blow in one day. So, now our focus is to put that money that would have gone to allowances and put into preparations,” said Jani.

“I am sure you have all seen that where the boys are staying, it is no less than a five-star hotel. “All this is to set their mind to a professional level which is good for their future.”

Everything went wrong for the Young Sables on Sunday. They gave away to 10-0 leading to lose the match 13-28, missing out on a Junior Rugby World Cup slot.

Captain Benoni Nhekairo bemoaned that his troops played to the gallery because of the colorful crowd that thronged the stadium.

“I am not going to hide the fact that we gave Kenya the game. I feel like we were the better side but Kenya stuck together. They played like a family and they really put us on the back foot. They were better than us on the day,” Nhekairo said.

“I think in the second half you could see players were now arguing, shouting at each other. I feel like boys were feeling the pressure and when little mistakes were made, we were going at each other’s (throat) instead of motivating each other; its part of the game. You learn as you go through.”

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