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Amonde hoping for one more Olympic run

Tuesday March 24 2020

Kenya Rugby 7s player Andrew Amonde during the interview on June 16, 2019. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |

Kenya Rugby 7s player Andrew Amonde during the interview on June 16, 2019. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |  NATON MEDIA GROUP

AYUMBA AYODI
By AYUMBA AYODI
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Kenya Sevens skipper Andrew Amonde is planning to hang his boots in style after the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.

However, Amonde could fail to realise his dream of captaining the Kenya Sevens for the second time at the Summer Games if the Tokyo Games are postpone to next year or beyond owing to the Covid-19.

At the same time, Amonde described how it has been hard for him as a family man to self-quarantine for 14 days, after returning from the I the Los Angeles and Vancouver legs of the World Rugby Sevens Series.

“I really want to retire in style at the Tokyo Olympics Games,” said the 36-year-old Amonde. “I will be comfortable if the games are postponed to anytime this year but it will get complicated if they are pushed to next year.”

Amonde, who has already acquired World Rugby Level I certification in strength and conditioning said he planned to undertaken a Level II either in South Africa or Namibia next year.

“Another year will be too much for me hence I will give a chance to other young players. I will wish the team best of luck. It’s always every sportsmen or woman’s dream to be at the Olympics,” said Amonde, a father of two.

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Amonde explained that to self-quarantine needed special discipline especially after having stayed around for some days.

Kenya Sevens returned to the country on March 10 after two weeks in North America where thousands of coronavirus cases have been recorded.

Sports Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed directed on March 16 that all sportspersons, including coaches and teams’ support personnel, who had travelled outside the country in the past 14 days, to immediately self-quarantine for two weeks.

“We had stayed around for some days and being told to self-quarantine came with mixed emotions,” explained Amonde, whose self-quarantine period ends Wednesday. “Here you have children who can’t stay away from you when you are in the house and you don’t want to put their lives at risk."

Amonde, who is glad to be coming through well, said training now be at a personal level ahead of the next four legs of the World Sevens Series and the Tokyo Olympics.

Already, World Rugby has postpone London Sevens and Paris Sevens to September with Hong Kong and Singapore coming in October.

Talking about his team’s lukewarm run in the World Rugby Series, Amonde said other senior players, who have returned, and their coach Paul Feeney needed to adjust.

“Most of these senior players had not played for close to two seasons while few months are not enough for Feeney to chalk the much desired results,” said Amonde.

The veteran player said Feeney needed time to explored the Kenyan style of play before trying to infuse his philosophy and ideas. “It’s a learning curve and I am certain we shall crack it.”

Feeney indeed earlier said that while the four-and-a-half months he has been with the team was not enough to produce the much desired results, he had been able to come up with the players and the team he needed to move into the future with confidence.

The team has come under heavy criticism over its poor performance despite the return of the senior players, who had stayed away the whole of the previous season.

Kenya has made it to two Cup quarter-finals this season in Cape Town, South Africa and Hamilton, New Zealand.

The team is currently placed 12th in the series standings with 35 points after six legs.

Kenya is only three places above relegation in the 17-team Series where New Zealand top with 115 points followed by South Africa and Fiji with 104 and 83 points respectively.

Kenya Sevens only managed nine points from the previous legs of Las Vegas and Vancouver where they finished 14th and 12th respectively.

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