•The former skipper said they were looking at achieving their targets of making it the quarterfinals in this tournaments
•Shujaa have lost three times to the Blitzbokke 14-5 at the Tokyo Olympics and 21-7 and 31-7 in two tournaments but Simiyu the gap between them and powerhouse is narrowing
Kenya Sevens head coach Innocent Simiyu has termed Vancouver draw as tricky.
Shujaa face powerhouses South Africa, Spain and invitational side Mexico in Vancouver and Simiyu believes it's a competitive pool.
“We have played quite often with South Africa and we know what they bring physically besides being a top side. Spain are a very competitive side while Mexico are an unknown quantity and will want to upset the top teams in the pool,” added Simiyu.
Shujaa have lost three times to the Blitzbokke (14-5 at the Tokyo Olympics and 21-7 and 31-7 in two other tournaments), but Simiyu believes the gap between them and powerhouse is narrowing fast.
“This game is all about small margins and we are closing the gap on them and matching them. The upcoming tourney will once again provide an opportunity to see where we stand,” he added.
Simiyu said they are keen to expose more players to the rigours of the World Sevens Series.
The new faces in the team for the upcoming tournaments—include Levi Amunga, Derrick Keyoga, Alvin Marube, Mark Kwemoi and Timothy Mmasi.
"We want to test them in the deep end and play against the best in the world and that's the only way they will improve their games and become corner stones of the team going forward,” added Simiyu.
The former skipper said they are looking at achieving their targets of making it to the quarter-finals in the two tournaments.
"Our key focus in the first two tournaments is to get our game going and start hitting those performance targets early enough in the season.
"If we can be able to play in the quarters and semis, it will be a very big plus in this journey that is heading towards the Commonwealth Games and World Cup next year,” added Simiyu.
Pool 'B' features Great Britain surprise packages Ireland and Jamaica with USA topping Pool 'C' alongside Canada, Germany and Chile.
Shujaa will also play in Dubai in December with World Rugby set to release the reminder of the World Sevens Series calendar in the new year.