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Blitzboks stay calm as gold looms

2016-08-11 07:02
Kyle Brown (Getty)

Rio de Janeiro - Whatever happens in Thursday's Sevens semi-final between South Africa and Great Britain at Deodoro Stadium, the Blitzboks will be playing for a medal in the evening session.

South Africa's win over Australia in the tournament quarter-finals on Wednesday was convincing (22-5) and suggested that they are one of the more dangerous sides in the competition. 

With South Africa still without a gold medal at Rio 2016, this could be their first chance. 

Such a responsibility could come with a great pressure, but Blitzboks skipper Kyle Brown says the real pressure came before the quarter-final. 

"For me things have started to settle a bit more. The quarter-finals is an iffy stage and from tomorrow we afford ourselves that opportunity to get 14 minutes on the field to go and fight for a medal and that’s what’s important to us," Brown said after his side's win.

"If we had walked away from this game with a loss we would have walked away feeling like something was unfulfilled.

"Just giving ourselves that shot to go and play for a medal is something that we can be very proud of."

It is the first time ever that Sevens has been played at an Olympics, making this an historic event to win this year. 

The favourites on paper to meet in the final would be Fiji and South Africa, but speedster Seabelo Senatla is trying his best not to think about medals right now.

"I think it’s important for us to stay calm … we’re not really thinking about medals," he said.

"We’re only thinking about the game in front of us and that’s how we’re going about things."

South Africa will play the second semi-final of the day against Great Britain after Fiji take on Japan.

Lloyd Burnard is Sport24's correspondent in Rio de Janeiro for the duration of the 2016 Olympics ...

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