Three time Kenya Cup champions University of Nairobi’s Mean Machine launch their quest for the inaugural Varsity League title against the University of Eldoret on September 29 at the University of Nairobi grounds.
Machine highlights Pool “B” of the championship where Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA) will take on Technical University of Kenya (TUK) also in the same pool.
Machine versus Eldoret match will start at 2pm with Catholic and TUK duel getting the proceeding started at 10am.
Speaking during the launch of the league at the University of Nairobi on Monday, the organisers, Sports Options managing director Aggrey Chabeda indicated that the league will adopt a festival format with matches being played at one venue.
University Sevens champion Blak Blad from Kenyatta University, who highlights Pool “A, will tackle Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) in the last match of the day at 4pm.
Egerton face Technical University of Mombasa (TUM) at 12pm in the other Pool “A” showdown.
The first leg will be played on September 28 at the University of Nairobi grounds with the second leg being hosted at Catholic University of East Africa on October 6.
Kenyatta University grounds will stage the third leg on October 13 with Egerton grounds taking their turn to stage the semi-finals on October 20. The play-off and final will be played on October 27 at the University of Nairobi.
The University of Nairobi will host the play-off for third place and the grand finale on October 27 in the League that has been sponsored by Homeboyz Entertainment, Fidelity Insurance and Sports Options.
Among those who attended the launch besides Chabeda was Homeboyz chief executive officer Mike Rabar, Fidelity Insurance marketing and business development manager Nicholas Malesi and Kenya Universities Sports Association (KUSA) president Mbaabu Murithi.
“This initiative is long overdue and we thank Sports Options for coming up with this noble idea,” said Murithi. “This will usher rugby into a new era.”
Murithi said he is looking for a new era where the universities will be able to hold on to their players for big leagues and tournaments in the country instead of the players appearing for top clubs while still in college.
Chabeda said the league will widen the vibrant player base in the game and give more players an opportunity to develop before the big jump to club rugby.
Rabar noted that sports is a tool that can bring change in the country and challenged the universities to take sorts to the next level.
“Let the universities invest more in modern facilities and training so as to produce complete sportsmen and women,” said Rabar.
Pool A: Kenyatta University (KU), Egerton University (EGU), Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), Technical University of Mombasa (TUM)
Pool B: University of Nairobi (UoN), Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA), University of Eldoret (UoE), Technical University of Kenya (TUK)
Sep 29: CEUA v Tuk (1am); EGU v Tum (12pm); UoN v UoE (2pm), KU v JKUAT (4pm)- UoN
Oct 6: CUEA v UoE (10am); EGU v JKUAT (12pm); KU v Tum (2pm); UoN v TUK (4pm)-CUEA
Oct : 13: UoE v. TUK (10am); JKUAT v TUM (12pm); UoN v CUEA (2pm); KU v EGU (4pm)-KU
Oct 20: Semi-finals 12pm and 4pm)- EGU
Oct 27: Play-off (12pm), Final (4pm)