Nambrew boosts Namibian rugby 

NRU vice president Johan Diergaardt, Tazneem Klazen of NBL, John Heynes of the NRU and Danie Keulder of NBL at the N$3 million sponsorship announcement. Photo: Helge Schütz

Namibian rugby received a boost on Tuesday when Namibia Breweries announced a N$3 million sponsorship for the coming year. 

The sponsorship will cover a variety of fields, while it also marks the first time in more than a decade that Namibia’s domestic leagues will be supported financially, according to Johan Diergaardt, vice president of the Namibia Rugby Union. 

“We will have a domestic league which will be supported financially and will greatly assist in organising and managing domestic rugby leagues across Namibia, thereby ensuring the continued participation and engagement of local rugby clubs and players. This will be the first time in almost 12 years that we have financial support for our domestic leagues,” he said. 

“Clubs are still entitled to have their own title sponsors, but the league will be known as the Windhoek Lager Premier League. We have prize money allocated, we just have to inform the local clubs about the details before we make it public,” he added. 

“We will assist all the leagues financially – the Premier League, the Reserve League and the Women’s League. It’s not a lot of money, but we will support them to pay for their logistics and teams that have to travel further like Grootfontein, for instance, will receive more than Windhoek-based teams like Wanderers,” he said. 

The sponsorship will also help develop rugby at a regional level, by investing in regional competitions, while some of the funds will go towards the national u20 team, as well as the NRU’s national hosting budget, specifically for the senior team’s home international match against Portugal in July. 

Besides that, funds will also be allocated to the development and training of referees, as well as the NRU’s annual general meeting and club forum meetings. 

“The involvement of Namibia Breweries in these initiatives is pivotal not only for the advancement of rugby, but also for promoting our sport on the international stage. Through this partnership we aim to not only strengthen the foundations of rugby in Namibia, but also to elevate its profile globally,” Diergaardt said.  

Tasneem Klazen, marketing manager of Namibia Breweries Limited, said their aim is to qualify for the 2027 Rugby World Cup. 

“Our aim is simple – to build a strong national team that can compete at the highest level, and our focus remains on our shared goal of ensuring that we prepare and qualify for the world cup in 2027,” she said. 

“NBL is committed to supporting rugby in Namibia and through smart investments and teamwork, our sponsorship aims to build a strong and lasting rugby community, by helping young players, supporting local clubs in all the regional leagues. By encouraging a culture of excellence we really hope to create a national team that Namibia can be proud of,” she added. 

Diergaardt, meanwhile, said that a lack of adequate preparation contributed to the u20 team’s lacklustre performances at the u20 Barthes Cup in Zimbabwe last week. Namibia lost 34-28 to Kenya and 35-23 to Zimbabwe, before beating Tunisia 26-15 in their final match, to finish third overall.

“They could have done better, but our preparation was lacking. We were supposed to receive Boland or Western Province u20 as part of our preparations, but financially we couldn’t make it and only had preparation matches against some of our club teams. So the intensity and game sharpness was lacking in the first two games, but one could see that the players have a lot of potential, so I’m not panicking about the future, we just need to be better prepared,” he said. 

Stay informed with The Namibian – your source for credible journalism. Get in-depth reporting and opinions for only N$85 a month. Invest in journalism, invest in democracy –
Subscribe Now!

Latest News