Niger and Ghana to contest Trophy final

(IRB.COM) Thursday 16 July 2009

 Niger and Ghana to contest Trophy final
The tournament plays a key role in African rugby's development

Ghana ran out 17-7 winners over Burkina Faso on the final day of the pool stages to top Pool B and set up a CAR (Confederation of African Rugby) Development Trophy final against defending champions Niger in Lomé, Togo, on Saturday.

They had opened their campaign with a convincing 44-0 defeat of Togo II - who had stepped following Chad's late withdrawal - and then drew 5-5 with Nigeria, so knew victory over Burkina Faso was a necessity if they were to reach the final.

Niger, who beat Burkina Faso in last year's final, finished top of Pool A with an identical record to Ghana, having beaten Benin 10-3, drawn 11-11 with Mali and then edged hosts Togo 6-3 in the pool decider on Wednesday.

The other matches on the final day will see Togo face Burkina Faso in the third place play-off, Nigeria meet Mali with fifth spot at stake and Togo II tackle Benin with both sides seeking a first victory.

"This tournament is a crucial part of African rugby’s development," said IRB Regional Development Manager for Africa, Jean-Luc Barthes.

"Through more regular competition, these countries are growing their rugby effectively and can one day hope to challenge the likes of Kenya, Uganda and Madagascar in the next tier of competition in Africa."

Pool A:
Togo 6-5 Mali
Niger 10-3 Benin
Niger 11-11 Mali
Togo 6-5 Benin
Niger 6-3 Togo
Mali 11-0 Benin

Pool B:
Burkina Faso 17-7 Nigeria
Ghana 44-0 Togo II
Burkina Faso 43-0 Togo II
Ghana 5-5 Nigeria
Burkina Faso 7-17 Ghana
Togo II 0-43 Nigeria