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Politics casts doubt on Kenya's 'Safari Sevens'

Politics casts doubt on Kenya’s ‘Safari Sevens’

Nairobi – Kenya’s annual ‘Safari Sevens’ rugby tournament is the latest sporting event to be postponed over political uncertainty ahead of a re-run presidential vote.

The tournament, which attracts foreign, national and local sides, was due to start next month at the Rugby Football Union of East Africa (RFUEA) grounds in the capital Nairobi, but with the annulled presidential election to be re-run a week earlier organisers have decided to postpone it.

“The Kenya Rugby Union (KRU) has regrettably arrived at the decision to postpone this year’s Safari Sevens which was set for 3 November 2017 at the RFUEA ground,” the federation said in a statement.

Although “planning and preparations were at an advanced stage” the KRU statement pointed to “mounting challenges and uncertainty in the prevailing political climate” and said “it would be prudent to postpone the event”.

It is possible the tournament may now be cancelled altogether due to the busy international rugby calendar, including the World Rugby Sevens Series, which starts in Dubai on December 1.

Kenya’s national team was due to compete in the two-day tournament against teams from Fiji, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Germany and Uganda.

Cricket, football and marathon events have also been affected by the political uncertainty and were either postponed or moved to other countries.

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