The Kenyan sevens star hangs up his cleats

Collins Injera of Kenya has announced his retirement from rugby after a distinguished career in which he represented Kenya in both sevens and 15s.The Kenyan sevens star hangs up his cleats.

Injera made his Test debut against Uganda in August of 2006, and he most recently participated in the Simbas’ Rugby Africa Cup 2022 campaign in France in July of last year.

However, Injera will be most affectionately remembered for the shorter version of the game.

In March 2007 in Hong Kong, 36-year-old Injera made his World Rugby Sevens Series debut and went on to make 424 appearances over the course of 15 years. He finished the circuit with a total of 279 tries (second only to England and Great Britain veteran Dan Norton) and 1,443 points.

In his fifteen years on the sevens circuit, he participated in 83 tournaments, the most by a Kenyan player and the sixth most overall. In 2015, after scoring his 200th Sevens Series try at Twickenham, Injera took a pen from his sock and signed the match ball and television camera.

Two Olympic Games and four Rugby World Cup Sevens also featured Injera. At the 2009 RWC Sevens in Dubai, he crossed the whitewash five times to help the Shujaa Sevens reach the semifinals, which was arguably his finest moment in a Kenyan sevens jersey.

After this event, Injera and his brother Humphrey ‘Tall’ Kayange were nominated for World Rugby Sevens Player of the Year in 2009.

Injera, playing with Kayange, scored two tries in the Cup final as Kenya defeated Fiji 30-7 in Singapore in 2016 to earn their sole World Rugby Sevens Series title to date.

Perhaps it was fitting that his final outing for Kenya occurred at the RWC Sevens 2022 in September in Cape Town, when he helped the Shujaa finish in 12th place.

In a message posted on all of his social media accounts on Tuesday, Injera announced his retirement, claiming that his body informed him it was time to hang up his cleats.

“Everything must eventually come to an end. I have always said that my body will tell me when the time is right.

“And for the past few months it has really’spoken’ to me, so I’ve chosen to really listen. After 17 years of literal blood, sweat, and tears, it is time for me to step away from this magnificent game that has given me more than I could have ever imagined.

“Thank you, Lord, for providing me with the strength, opportunities, and safety to play the game I love for so long.

“I would want to thank my wife, Chebet, and my children, Chloe, Clyde, and Carl, for the love, support, and understanding they have shown me throughout the years. Those days, weeks, and often months that you endured without my presence while I traveled the world pursuing my goal are now done.

“The moment has come for me to spend some much-needed quality time with you. Thank you, mother, father, and Linda, for your prayers, counsel, and support. We achieved it, my brothers Tall [Humphrey] and Mike! We were able to perform locally and abroad.

“I would like to thank all of my teammates, coaches, management, and opponents for the experiences we have created on and off the field. We have experienced both highs and lows together. Thank you for being a part of my journey and for assisting me in achieving my goals.

“Thank you to the fans, the media, and the sponsors for your support throughout my career,” he ended. “I hope I made you all proud.”

Injera, who played international rugby alongside his younger brother Michael Agevi and their older sibling Kayange, stated that he would continue his humanitarian efforts after his retirement.