Jacques van der Westhuyzen

Compiled by Jacques van der Westhuyzen

Head of Sport

Blitzboks seek consistency after finishing ninth in Vancouver

The SA Sevens team are down in sixth in the standings ahead of this weekend's event in Los Angeles.

Following another up-and-down showing at a World Sevens Series event, this time in Canada, the Blitzboks are down in sixth place in the standings with 46 points, way off the lead set by Argentina, who’re on 78 points.

The Blitzboks finished ninth in Vancouver at the fourth event of the series. Coach Sandile Ngcobo was frustrated by the team’s inconsistency again, something he says the team will have to work on ahead of the next tournament in Los Angeles.

“We finished the best way possible,” said Ngcobo, referring to the 24-7 win over Australia to claim ninth place.

“We asked the players to leave a statement and that is what they did. This was a very good win over Australia and that reflects more on our abilities.”

Canada performance

The Blitzboks started the tournament in Vancouver with a victory over New Zealand (who eventually lost in the final to Argentina), but then lost twice in a row to not only finish last in the pool, but also miss the quarter-finals.

“We need to be more consistent, that is a fact – we cannot arrive at games not mentally ready,” said Ngcobo.

“The positive finish in our last two games, beating Canada and Australia, showed what can be done. We know we can put any team away; we have the individuals and the culture to put it together but we are not consistent in doing that.”

According to the Blitzbok coach, their focus will shift for the USA leg: “The mental side of the game is currently the issue, and we will address that going forward.”

The Blitzboks have been drawn in Pool A in Los Angeles this weekend. They will again face Ireland, who pipped them in Vancouver, and will also be up against series leaders and Canada champions, Argentina, as well as Spain in their other pool matches.

Top eight in standings:

  1. Argentina – 78 points
  2. Ireland – 54 points
  3. Fiji – 54 points
  4. New Zealand – 50 points
  5. Australia – 47 points
  6. South Africa – 46 points
  7. France – 36 points
  8. USA – 30 points

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Blitzboks Sevens

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