Touch Rugby tourney back at the Coast
Touch Rugby, Kenya's premier beach event is back and rugby lovers around the world will make their annual pilgrimage to watch a spectacle that has become popular for being the perfect cocktail of Touch Rugby and entertainment.
The 2022 edition of the South Coast Fives kicked off in style on Friday at the Safari Beach Hotel in Diani, Kwale County. The annual 3-day sporting festival returns to the shores of Kenya's finest beach for the weekend of July 22-24.
The South Coast Fives is supported by the Federation of International Touch (FIT)-Kenya, a representative of the international governing body for the sport of Touch. FIT-Kenya does a lot of work with development, coaching, and refereeing of the sport in the country.
Speaking to Citizen Digital, Elam Muniafu who is the Senior Development Officer at FIT-Kenya explained his excitement at the return of the event.
"I am hoping that the best comes out of this tournament. Teams are so far giving one hundred percent and playing very good touch rugby. Generally, we would like to see it running for a lot more years."
With the standards of the sport getting higher, the popularity of Touch Rugby has grown through the years. This year's edition will see a total of 24 domestic and international outfits with women, junior and school outfits all taking part.
For three days, the resort town of Diani will see an influx of over 2,000 visitors and for a town that has tourism as one of its major lifelines, the tournament could not have come at a better time.
Prudence Waithera who is the Assistant Marketing Manager at Safari Beach Hotel explained to Citizen Digital how vital sporting activities like the South Coast Fives are to the tourism sector in Diani and Kwale County in general.
"The tourism sector has a pivotal role in reviving the industry and we at Safari Beach Hotel have for long had a legacy of engaging and supporting the local community. We welcome everyone to come and enjoy rugby, music, and entertainment."
With a number of sponsors coming on board to support the tournament, Miss Waithera also reiterated the importance of different stakeholders supporting such initiatives. "A big thank you goes out to our sponsors who have supported the teams and players a huge part in giving the tournament visibility."
Saturday's programme will commence in the afternoon with games kicking off at 3:30 pm. On Sunday, games will commence early morning with trophy presentations and the closing ceremony set to take place in the afternoon.
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