A Rugby Life

A Rugby Volunteer's Blog

Adopt a developing Nation – Follow Nigeria Rugby

NigeriaThere’s not much rugby union to be found in the UK other than the occasional Sevens tournament, but all around the world dozens of developing nations are starting their journey through the qualifying rounds for the Rugby World Cup in 2015.

Now’s the ideal time to adopt one of these countries and I would urge you to follow the progress of Nigeria (where I was born) as they start their World Cup quest on Sunday.  They take on Ivory Coast in Divison 1c of the African Cup of Nations in Gaberone, Botswana, where only the tournament winners will go through to the next qualifying stage.

How can you support?  The game, which kicks off on Sunday at 12 noon local time (11am UK time), will be streamed live on the internet at www.lc2international.tv.  If you are on Twitter follow @NigeriaRugby or go to www.twitter.com/nigeriarugby and you can visit the website at www.nrff.co.uk.  There’s no Facebook page at the moment but I’ll be putting updates on my profile at www.facebook.com/andrew.sarekrfu

Nigeria are 91st out of 96 in the IRB rankings and a win over Ivory Coast who are 43 places higher at 48th should see a big rise up the table.  The formula is complicated but I calculate that a win could see Nigeria in 82nd place when the updated rankings are published on Monday.

Ivory Coast played in the 1995 Rugby World Cup in South Africa where they were grouped with Scotland, France and Tonga, losing all their games.  But their fortunes have faded and and as far as I can see they last won a game in 2008.

Nigeria’s record is patchy as they have only played once in the past three years, but there is a lot of optimism in a squad made up from a mixture of UK and Nigeria based players and they are predicting an upset over their much higher-ranked opponents.  The players need all the support they can get and for them to know that people in the UK are rooting for them really makes a difference, so get behind the team and catch some early World Cup fever!

CAR Division Ic Fixtures (UK kick-off times) all streamed live at www.lc2international.tv:

    • Sunday 22 June 11:00 Nigeria v Ivory Coast
    • Wednesday 25 June 13:00 Nigeria v Mauritius
    • Saturday 28 June 15:00 Nigeria v Botswana

Related post – 15 July 2012  The Road to Twickenham 2015 – The journey begins


3 responses to “Adopt a developing Nation – Follow Nigeria Rugby

  1. James Sarel 19 July 2012 at 4:56 pm

    I’m going to try and watch all of these. I’ve personally got high hopes of Nigeria becoming one of the “teams to watch” over the next 5 years and with the right management, development and a belief that they can go far then I don’t see any reason why Nigeria can’t become at least a top 50 team.

    Even if Nigeria don’t end up qualifying for the RWC, 2, or even 3 wins from this qualifying stage should be seen as a major success for a nation that is dominated by football in terms of its sporting history.

    All I can do is wish the boys all the very best of luck and root for them on Sunday morning, Wednesday afternoon and next Saturday afternoon.

    Go Nigeria!


  2. James Sarek 19 July 2012 at 4:57 pm

    And I’m sure you’ll realise that should say “Sarek”.


  3. James Sarek 19 July 2012 at 5:24 pm

    Hang on, my whole post has been deleted! Bah.

    Anyway, I’ll write it out again – or at least paraphrase. I believe that that there’s no reason why, with the right management, development and ethos, Nigeria can’t be in the world’s top 50 within the next 5 years or so. It’s great that it’s going to be streaming as this will give so many people a chance to see rugby from a part of the world where they would otherwise not have a chance.

    I’ll certainly be watching and even if Nigeria do not end up qualifying for the RWC 2015, 2 or 3 wins from this group should definitely be viewed as a success, indeed a springboard that they can work from. I’m proud to have links with the country and wish them all the best in all these games, which I am going to do my best to watch.



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