Kenya 7s

Kenya 7s appoint Damian McGrath as Head Coach, parts ways with Innocent Simiyu

Kenya Rugby Union has parted ways with Innocent Simiyu and have appointed Damian McGrath as the new head coach. 

McGrath will be in charge for the next two years leading up to the 2024 Summer Olympic Games in Paris, France.

Simiyu who was reappointed in 2020 leaves the team alongside his technical bench members Michael Shamiah and Anthony Muchiri.

The three leave the team at a time when Kenya 7s have performed dismally in the World 7s Series and finished third in the Africa Men’s 7s.

“The Kenya Rugby Union (KRU) has opted to part ways with Innocent Simiyu, Head Coach of the Kenyan men’s national sevens team, Shujaa,” reads a statement by KRU.

“We offer our sincerest thanks to Innocent, Michael and Anthony for their tireless efforts and extend our very best wishes for the future,” the statement adds.

Kenya 7s new head coach Darmian McGrath. Photo Courtesy/KRU

McGrath will work with Kevin Wambua as his assistant and Geoffrey Kimani as the strength and conditioning coach.

“He boasts close to thirty years coaching experience, having most recently led Germany 7s to victory at the World Rugby Challenger Series in Chile in 2020. He previously coached Canada 7s between 2016 and 2019, leading the Canadians to the cup title at the 2017 Singapore 7s,” KRU announced

“Prior to the Canadian job, Damian was in charge of the Samoa 7s squad during the 2015-16 season, leading them to the cup title at the 2016 Paris 7s.”

“He also coached England 7s at the 2002 and 2014 Commonwealth Games in Manchester and Glasgow as well as the 2005 Rugby World Cup 7s in Hong Kong.”

“Kevin Wambua, who has been a part of the Shujaa set up, will assist Damian in ensuring a seamless transition while Geoffrey Kimani takes up the Strength & Conditioning coaching role.”

“Kimani, who is part of the National Olympic Committee –Kenya Elite Performance set up, is no stranger to the Shujaa set up, and returns for a fourth stint, having previously served in the S & C role between 2007 and 2011, 2015-16 and 2017-18.”

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