Uganda will join Kenya and Tanzania in the regional Bamburi Rugby Super Series, to tussle it out in the only franchise rugby arrangement across the region, come April 30th, 2011. The regional tournament which attracts top players from the three East African countries will be held between April and May in all the three countries and is expected to be the determinant for the national team qualifiers for the coming year's selections.
Speaking at the launch of the tournament at Kyadondo Rugby grounds, the Chairman, BRSS Uganda, Paul Ojambo said that the necessary preparations for the tournament have been tied down to ensure that the tournament kicks off on the scheduled dates.
"The Bamburi Rugby Super Series tournament is not only important because of the relationship it foresters among the three countries, but it is also a build up into the national team selections which shall be done about a month later", Ojambo said.
"Preparations are in very high gear to ensure that standards are maintained, but also to ensure that the players enjoy, while giving their fan base an action packed season of new talent, new skills; which are important for the development of the sport in Uganda."
In his remarks, the Chairman, BRSS East Africa, Aggrey Chabeda noted that where as the three countries may not be seen to be at the same level, the BRSS tournament provides a good platform to engage the players from the various clubs, who now play for one franchise team to bring out the best in them while they compete with some of their stronger counterparts in the region.
"The purpose of the BRSS tournament is to create a platform for exposure, but to also build stronger associations among players across the region", Chabeda said.
"This is a regional tournament and our focus is to grow it on the framework of the EAC, which also includes Rwanda and Burundi".
Speaking at the same event, Hima Cement's General Manager, David Njoroge said that as a regional manufacturer, they are proud to be associated with the BRSS tournament, and noted that the support that they have been able to get from all the various stakeholders is what has driven Hima and Bamburi to continue supporting the super series.
"As Hima Cement, we have decided to give an additional 20 million Uganda shillings-besides what our mother company Bamburi injected; to boost the tournament further from the Ugandan side, because it will make us very proud if Uganda is able to participate competitively, and get to the finals, or even bring back the over all prize", Njoroge noted.
While presenting a dummy cheque worth UGX 32 million, the Sponsorships Manager, Nile Breweries said that for Nile, this is a big opportunity because as National team and league sponsors, their contribution to the development of the BRSS tournament further illustrates their commitment to grow Ugandan rugby right from the grass root level. This is the first time Nile Breweries is sponsoring the BRSS- as tournament associate sponsors.
The 2011 tournament shall be the 9th edition of the BRSS, and the 3rd in which Uganda is participating, with two franchise teams- Victoria and Rwenzori. Kenya will have five franchises and Tanzania has one.