Photo: Former Kenya 7s Head coach Mike Friday. Source @Kenyarugby247
As former Kenya 7s head coach, Mike Friday gets ready for a brief adventure in Kenya, we were eager to know what his plans are. Friday will be the head coach of Samurai international 7s team in the 20th edition of Safari 7s.
Mike Friday known to many as Otoyo built an impressive CV during his brief run at the helm of Kenya 7s rugby team.
Mike Friday is now faced with a demanding assignment as he will look to bring success to Samurai 7s in the upcoming Safari 7s tournament.
Are you looking forward to win this title with Samurai for the first time?
I have already won this title as I played and won the tournament in its very first ever year playing for Public School Wanderers so have a strong history and affection with the tournament...I thoroughly enjoy the passion and enthusiasm the 40M+ bring to this event and to now return here with Samurai to compete in the tournament is exciting and I am looking forward to it. It will be a very tough tournament to win as we are a new team with 6 different nationalities coming together 3 days before the event whilst dealing with the heat and altitude of Nairobi. but the challenge is half the fun!
Do you regard Shujaa, Moran or any other side as a capable threat to your side?
I would say the Kenya 7's teams are the clear favorites as they have picked what they consider to be the best players in the country and it will be interesting whether they adopt a 1st and 2nd team approach or mix the teams up. Benjamin Ayimba has been very bold in guaranteeing success in these coming months so no doubt he is extremely confident that the Shujaa will prevail. Argentina are another clear contenders as a very competitive IRB circuit international team who will have had significant time together already.
Are you looking forward to working with Kenya 7s in future?
It is exciting times for Next Generation 7's and the partnership with Felix Totty and his business contacts and there is a real opportunity to allow the game to grow and prosper. If Next Generation 7's is part of that evolution to allow more girls and boys to learn how to play rugby then that is a very rewarding thing.
You have included Oscar Ouma and Felix Ayange in your squad, were they your favorite Kenya 7s players?
I loved all the players that hunted with me in the Pride I had no favorites apart from all of them!!!!..... Do I think they are very good players then absolutely. Oscar is very much his own man has power and pace and huge competitive desire that I enjoyed having around on and off the pitch whilst Felix is a always smiling and laid back but is the maverick on the pitch who is capable of doing what you least expect at important times whilst not compromising the team and you need that blend and balance in a successful squad....I am looking forward to seeing all the boys at the Safari 7's as I have fond memories of the Shujaa Pride as well as the 40M+
For how long have you been in training with the squad?
We will meet as a team on Wednesday 30th and that will be the first time we train together. That is the true challenge of the invitation team that we are able to find a way to bond and gel as a team and operate in a cohesive way by Saturday. A big task and challenge in this highly competitive tournament.