The India U-17 Rugby team will compete at the ‘Asia Rugby U17 Rugby Sevens Championship’ to be held at the Tainan Municipal Rugby Stadium, Tainan in Taiwan on September 9 and 10. This tournament will serve as a qualifier for the 2018 Youth Olympic Games to be held in Argentina. The team is led by Narasing Marndi and coached by Rehamuddin Shaikh.

A total of ten countries from across Asia, including Japan, Laos, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, UAE, Uzbekistan, India and host Chinese Taipei will vie for top honours at the championships.

The players shortlisted to join the Indian National Training Camp were selected during the Societe Generale Junior National Rugby Sevens Championship, held at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Chennai on June 10 and 11.

Mahesh Mathai, Secretary General, Rugby India said, “This is the first time an Indian U17 boys rugby team is participating in the qualifiers for the Youth Olympic Games. It is very encouraging to see that the interest for rugby is growing within India, especially at the age-group level.”

The team is supported by Societe Generale, the financial partner of Rugby India, and is participating under the aegis of the Indian Rugby Football Union (IRFU), the governing body for the sport of Rugby in India.

Indian team: Narasing Marndi (Odisha, captain), Vikas Dhuriya, Abhishek Yadav, Pankaj Singh, Chaitanya Motwane, Daryush Kapadia, Siddhant Mehta (all from Maharashtra) Sagar Biswas, Nikesh Kumar (both West Bengal), Pankaj Dagar, Raman Kumar and Amit Gautam (all Delhi).

Support staff: Coach: Rehamuddin Shaikh. Manager: Minnal Pastala. Physio: Abdul Wahid Khan Pathan.