Giants shoot to the top

Giants shoot to the top

Maseru – Despite a year’s absence from the Lesotho Rugby Championship, Giants have shown they remain the country’s dominant rugby club by shooting straight to the top of the league after three games.  Giants have a perfect record from three outings for a total of 13 points and appear on course to reclaim the crown they held in 2015 before their suspension by the Federation of Lesotho Rugby last year.

It is a swift turn of events from last February when the FLR imposed a two-year ban on Giants after the club pulled out of the league and accused the federation of mismanagement.
After a year-long tiff, FLR and Giants smoked a peace pipe last month and the club’s public relations officer, Napo Mapuru, said their fine start should not come as a surprise.
He explained Giants remained active during their time away from the Rugby Championship and have been helped by returning to the league with a full squad.
Mapuru said the players are delighted to be competing in the local championship once again and added that Giants are working hard to develop new talent.
“We are in very good shape and our players are happy to be playing rugby locally again,” Mapuru said.

“During our time-out we were still playing rugby even though it was for fun and to also keep the young players who want to join Giants motivated.”
“Another thing is we have been focusing more on our development and if you realised during the games we have played so far, we have mixed the senior players with the young ones. There are some new faces in our team but we came back with a full squad,” Mapuru said.
Giants’ 2017 league results:

30/01/2017: Giants 34-7 Mabote Beavers
04/02/2017: Giants 17-7 Maseru Warriors
18/02/2017: Giants 7-3 NUL Spears
Giants, who were formed in 2014 and won the inaugural Lesotho Rugby Championship in 2015, also competed in the Griffons Eastern Free State League in 2014 and 2015 before their ban.

Their experience has been key so far this season and was again evident last Saturday as they edged out the National University of Lesotho Spears 7-3 in a tightly fought clash.
Meanwhile, Lesotho has won the bidding rights to host the Rugby Africa South 1D tournament in October. The tri-nations showdown will be held in Mafeteng and the national side, Likoatola, will take on Malawi and Swaziland.

The development is a boost for Lesotho with the winner of the competition set to be promoted to Rugby Africa’s 1C tier next year.
Likoatola have enjoyed recent success against both opponents having beaten Swaziland 13-10 in 2015 and claimed an impressive 31-11 win over Malawi last August.

Weekend’s Lesotho Rugby Championship fixture:
Giants vs. Lioalaoala (12:00)
Mabote Beavers NUL Spears (14:00)
The Birds vs. Maseru Warriors (16:00)

Luciah Phahla

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