Rugby Africa has announced new dates for the Africa Bronze Cup to be held in Cameroon in May.
The Tournament which Includes Nigeria, Algeria and Cameron will now hold from 7th – 13th May, 2017.
The tier three event now known as “Bronze Cup” will consist of six teams, divided into Group North and Group South. The northern group will hold from 7th to 13th May and will consist of Nigeria runners up of 2016’s Division 1C, Algeria and Cameron, both returning after not competing in the competition in 2016. The southern group tournament which will take place immediately after the northern tournament will be made up of Zambia, relegated from Division 1B, Mauritius from Division 1C and Rwanda, who recently attained full membership of World Rugby. Only one team with most points will climb up to Silver Cup in 2018.
NRFF Technical Director, Tunji Fasimoye stated that Nigeria has a huge opportunity to be promoted this year judging by level of players development. “already we have been going round scouting for players and we will open camp early in the month of April in preparation for the event, we will be engaging mostly the home based players following our quest to develop the sport locally which has paid off in so many aspects”.
There are other tiers of competitions in Africa including the Gold Cup formerly Cup 1A which is the tier 1 event. Four teams from 2016’s Division 1A – Kenya, Namibia, Uganda and Zimbabwe will be joined by the two pool winners fromDivision 1B, Senegal and Tunisia. This competition will be played on a round-robin basis.
The second tier is now called Africa Silver Cup where three highest-ranked non-finalists from Division 1B – Botswana, Ivory Coast and Madagascar – will be joined by 2016 Division 1C champions Morocco for a tournament to be held in July.
The Regional Challenge is the lowest tier of African rugby. The remaining twelve African teams were divided into four groups of three teams; the Group West 1 tournament containing Benin, Ghana and Togo which will be played from 30 April to 6 May, the Group West 2 tournament containing Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger will be played from 21 to 27 May, the Group Centre tournament containing Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo and Gabon will be played from 1 to 7 October, and the Group South tournament containing Lesotho, Malawi and Swaziland will be played from 15 to 22 October.