Ambaka completes New Zealand switch - Daily Nation

Kenya 7s star Willy Ambaka completes Manawatu Turbos move

Friday June 2 2017

Kenya's Willy Ambaka scores a try during a HSBC Paris Sevens Series rugby match between Kenya and Portugal at the Stade Jean Bouin in Paris on May 13, 2016. PHOTO | THOMAS SAMSON | AFP

Kenya's Willy Ambaka scores a try during a HSBC Paris Sevens Series rugby match between Kenya and Portugal at the Stade Jean Bouin in Paris on May 13, 2016. PHOTO | THOMAS SAMSON | AFP 

By BRIAN YONGA
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Kenya Sevens star Willy Ambaka has completed his move New Zealand's Manawatu Turbos, the club announced on Friday.

Visa complications almost shattered the deal but Ambaka, who left the country a few days ago, was finally able to sort out the issues and finalise the deal.

The speedy winger withdrew from the Kenya Sevens team that played in the Hong Kong and Singapore legs in April this year to facilitate the move.

“It is a pleasure to announce the signing of Kenyan sevens star and Olympian Willy Ambaka. The 27-year-old has come in search of a good environment to hone his fifteens skills, after showing the world what he can do in the faster version of the game,” the club said on its website.

Ambaka said he is determined to improve his game and learn from other stars.

“I’m most comfortable on the right wing, but I’m looking at this as a learning experience, it’s always good to have a change of environment,” he said.

“Super Rugby is definitely the goal, but I’m just really looking forward to putting in some good performances for the Turbos.”

This will be the third pro stint for the Quins flyer, who rose to prominence in the World Series scene in the 2012/13 season, a year after his debut.

Ambaka was one of the for the World Rugby's sevens player of the year award, won by New Zealander Tim Mikkelson in 2013, and went to the Rio Olympics with Kenya in 2016.

He spent a season playing division two rugby in France for Lyon in 2013-14, where he scored six times in 10 matches to help the team win promotion to the French Top 14.

He also played for Western Province in South Africa's Currie Cup before returning to the sevens circuit.

Ambaka could made his debut in Saturday’s match against Freyberg.

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