Kenya National Rugby Union Squad Simbas Captain William Reeve BATUK Forces Radio BFBS Jo Thoenes
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How A Welsh Soldier Will Represent Kenya In The 2019 Rugby World Cup

“Being a keen rugby player I shoehorned myself in and they were more than happy to have me come along and throw a ball around.”

Kenya National Rugby Union Squad Simbas Captain William Reeve BATUK Forces Radio BFBS Jo Thoenes

A Royal Gurkha Regiment officer has been called up by the Kenya National Rugby Union Squad who need the last place to be filled for the 2019 World Cup in Japan.

Captain William Reeve, Adjutant to British Army Training Unit Kenya (BATUK) is eligible to play for the Kenyan team through his father.

As Forces Radio BFBS Brize Norton broadcaster Jo Thoenes discovered it all started when the Kenyan national team came to BATUK for a couple of days of team building.

“Being a keen rugby player I shoehorned myself in and they were more than happy to have me come along and throw a ball around.”

“I realised that I had claim at Kenyan eligibility to play for the team.”

The last place in the 2019 World Cup will be decided during a Repechage Tournament that gets underway for the Kenyan team in Marseille on Armistice Day.

A world away from regular and remembrance duties that Captain Reeve might have been expecting to be performing.

"At the moment we're delivering Exercise Askari Storm, currently got 1st Battalion The Irish Guards.

"Their battle group is out here training and shortly we're going to be receiving the main body of 2 PARA who will then see us through the rest of the 2018 exercise."

Jo asked how the Kenyan team have reacted to William being eligible to play with them at the World Cup in Japan.

"They've all been very receptive, they're all very inquisitive as to how I've turned up and what I'm doing and how long I'll be here for."

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William is preparing to spend Armistice Day in a slightly different way this year.

Rather than performing Remembrance duties in Kenya where he is currently posted, he will be in Marseilles, representing Kenya in their bid to make it to next year’s Rugby World Cup Final in Japan and even representing the country at sevens.

"The immediate future obviously is France and that is a big stepping stone and the final stepping stone into Rugby World Cup 2019."

Pictures Credit: Alligin Photography

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