On Sunday 14th November 2021, having attended a poignant Remembrance Service at the Nanyuki War Memorial, members of BATUK RFC quickly changed and took to the pitch at Dol Dol to present an array of tackle bags, contact shields and post protectors,courtesy of Richmond Rugby club in London, to the local children.

Under the tutelage of Mr Denish Gem and assisted by BATUK RFC the local orphans rock up every weekend to listen, learn and most importantly to play rugby. Never sure of exact numbers or ages but always expecting around 50 eager kids the team must develop sessions on the hoof.

This weekend we were really pleased to be able to present an array of kit sent across by Reg Clark of Rhino Rugby UK, some of the items had been donated from the England RFU. Getting the kids started is always fun, splitting them into 4 and quickly setting up the Auckland Cross drill, many had never played rugby so getting to them to understand the drills took a little time – but once they grasped it with the older kids explaining it wasn’t long before we were able to add a few twists to the drill. Just great to hear the kids calling out names and demanding the ball – yes there were a few dropped balls which meant the mandated press ups or run around the posts – but on the whole they picked it up very quickly.

Once warmed up the kids split into ability groups. Cpl ‘Six’ Rialoa, LCpl Lindsay-Clark & Pte Seru ran the older session with Maj Crane & Lt Col Stewart working with the younger kids. The youngest 4-year-old was shorter than the tackle bags but was so happy when she ran into it. The whole session was fun and it great to see that after 90 minutes the younger kids were all communicating well and there was an obvious improvement in their ball handling skills. The older group were keen to show off their skills with some expert offloads and swift running.

The Dol Dol pitch is a local area in the middle of the Township, the pitch is not in a great condition, the posts are 3 x wooden poles that have been rigged up to allow the kids to play – that said the kids are proud of their pitch and they were excited by now having their own post protectors – again very many thanks to Reg for providing then for us.

BATUK has helped develop local grass roots rugby for many years, mostly players who give up their time to come along and help develop the youngsters of Nanyuki.

A great weekend and looking forward to the continual development of Nanyuki Rugby and again this development is assisted by the kind donations from those in UK. If you are able and willing to donate then please get in touch with Major Richie Crane MBE, Email to discuss what and how you can help.

Words and images provided by Maj R Crane MBE, RLC

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