Namibia, the big favorite of the tournament, and Kenya qualified on Wednesday for the final of the African Zone qualifications for the 2023 Rugby World Cup, the winner of which will join Pool A at the World Cup in France.
During the first semi-final disputed in Marseille, Kenya won with difficulty 36-33 against Algeria, a young team, which only entered the world rankings last year.
“It's a disappointment, we've lost three points... We're all disappointed because we've worked long and hard.
Everyone is really disappointed,” lamented the Senegalese Ousmane Mané, coach of Algeria.
“But we are proud of this fight.
We entered the African Top 4 and it's exceptional", he added, proud of the performance of his team, ultra-dominant in the conquest phases but undermined by the power and explosiveness of the Kenyans when they recovered the ball.
For his part, the Kenyan captain, Daniel Lupao, said he was “proud of the boys and very happy with this victory”.
“We want to come back here next year.
There is one game left to win to go to the World Cup,” he added.
Sunday in Aix-en-Provence, the match in question will take place as planned against Namibia, accustomed to the World Cup, since it has participated in the last six editions.
On Wednesday, the more complete Namibians beat Zimbabwe 34-19.
“It was an incredible effort from the team.
We fought for each other and we couldn't do more than we did today.
Now, we will have to recover well, there is little time.
We have to find some freshness, ”said Namibian third line Janco Venter, who plays for Saracens in the English championship.
The winner of the tournament will be placed in Pool A of the World Cup-2023 (September 8 - October 21) along with New Zealand, three-time world champion, France, host country, Italy and Uruguay. .
Results of the semi-finals
Kenya - Algeria 36-33
Namibia - Zimbabwe 34-19