The National, Friday February 21st, 2014
IS there a reason why the Papua New Guinea Rugby Football Union (PNGRFU) is not riding on the success of the Kimbe, Black Orchid, Trans Highway and Kalibobo Lighthouse sevens tournaments.
It’s a gold mine sitting there waiting for the administrators of the game to jump on board, use its networking to lure major sponsors and for the first time give something back to these rural outposts that have been basically doing their job and not being rewarded for promoting the game.
It’s no wonder the national sevens team has spiralled down to an all time low with successive coaches that have been on lucrative salaries but have not found the solution.
It does not need a rocket scientist to see that money should be better spent in-country to develop the game at the provincial level.
The Kimbe Invitational Sevens gets underway today through the hardwork and self commitment of Freddie Matthies, who continues to fork out for the love of the code.
The question now is that if these tournaments at least play a pivotal role in selecting the PNG sevens team, why aren’t they supported by the governing body?
The annual national provincial sevens that has been in hiatus for a while is no longer the tournament used to develop and select sevens talent.
You have to feel for members national sevens team, who are asked to perform for their country but yet don’t play enough sevens at home and then don’t get duly compensated for their efforts.
It’s great news that the national provincial championships is back on again in three weeks time. And yes rural teams are scraping the barrel to come to Port Moresby in the hope of gaining selection.
We hope a squad has not been named yet and a coach identified from one of the former players.
It is those kind of moves that could be the antidote for a sevens revival.