NAIROBI, Dec. 13 (Xinhua) -- The final 12 teams have been determined that will compete in the Rugby 15s Africa Cup 2020 Group matches, which are scheduled for June 2020.
However, Africa champion Namibia and world champion South Africa will miss the action as they were involved in the World Cup.
Kenya, the Africa Cup silver medalist, received a bye to the group stage and will now have to face new-comers on the bloc Cote d'Ivoire and Morocco in a home and away format competition with the winner sailing through to the semifinals.
Madagascar, Senegal, Cote d'Ivoire and Ghana made the final cut after the preliminary round.
Madagascar dismissed Nigeria to gain entry to the top 12 cadres with Senegal seeing off Mauritius, Cote d'Ivoire stopped Rwanda in their cruise while Ghana eliminated Botswana.
"We have the pool pairings for the Rugby Africa Cup and it is a strong group Kenya are in. The Kenya team are in Pool B alongside Cote d'Ivoire and Morocco and we must work hard to gain passage to the semis," said Oduor Gangla, the Kenya Rugby Union chairman.
Madagascar will now take its place in Group A alongside Namibia and Zambia. Senegal will now play in Group D against Algeria and Uganda. Group C will have Tunisia, Zimbabwe and Ghana.
"The Africa Cup 2020 is a completely revised system of competition to bring more value to our federations, the spectators and our partners in the long term. We are confident that the new format will help us forge new partnerships that will allow us to improve our offering every year," said the president of Rugby Africa, Khaled Babbou.