Namibia Needs About N$20 Million to Prepare for IRB World Cup

With about 12 months left before the 2015 International Rugby Board (IRB) World Cup gets underway in England, the Namibia Rugby Union (NRU) is faced with a daunting task of amassing a staggering N$20-million to adequately prepare the players and to optimise the country’s level of participation ahead of the global rugby showpiece, NRU CEO Sybrand de Beer revealed yesterday.

Although De Beer admitted that the multimillion dollar world cup preparatory budget sounds a bit too much, he insisted that it is justified and in the best interest of Namibian rugby.

“If we are serious about making an impact at next year’s world cup, then we need to start strategising right now. It’s time we start focusing on the end product and the impact we could make at the world cup if we fully prepare our team, rather than complain about the size of the budget,” said De Beer.

Despite the union’s financial shortcomings, De Beer gly believes with the full support of government and the corporate sector they will succeed in raising the needed funds to implement all activities in their preparatory programme.

According to De Beer, Namibia’s rugby XV, the Welwitschias, will undergo a marathon preparatory campaign, which will feature more than 13 international matches and a three-week tour to Europe where they will take on formidable sides in France and Portugal, while another preparatory match against Canada is also on the menu.

The Welwitschias will also host either Germany or Zimbabwe in the first week of November in Windhoek. All the matches will be played during the IRB international autumn window.

“All these games will be very vital going to the world cup and since they will be played during the autumn window, it will provide national team coach Danie Vermeulen an opportunity to blend the local and foreign-based players in more competitive games.”

As for the second part of the preparatory programme which runs until next year, De Beer also disclosed that the NRU is in aanced talks with the South African Rugby Union (SARU) for a possible return to next year’s Vodacom Cup Challenge, which he says will be a great platform for the local players to gain the needed exposure.

Also next year, Namibia hopes to participate in the 2015 IRB Nations Cup in Romania while test matches against Zimbabwe and Kenya are also on the cards.

Source : New Era