Afrika blow for Blitzbokke

2012-03-28 14:03
Cecil Afrika (Gallo)
Johannesburg - Influential Springbok Sevens playmaker Cecil Afrika is on his way home to undergo treatment on his injured right knee and will miss the Japan Sevens in Tokyo this coming weekend.

In one of the two changes to the team that finished third in Hong Kong last weekend, Afrika was replaced by Renfred Dazel who will now play sweeper in Tokyo.

Newcomer Dirk Dippenaar will make his South African debut in place of Bernado Botha. The latter is on standby for Paul Delport, who must first pass a fitness test on Thursday.

Springbok Sevens coach Paul Treu said his team will their best to capitalise on the positives aspects of their matches against Samoa and England, whom they beat in the quarterfinals and third place play-off respectively in Hong Kong.

“We were clinical against Samoa and against England we did well to shut them out. Our focus will be to maintain that level of intensity and to keep the mental focus. We made the same errors in our two losses against New Zealand, which is hugely frustrating. If we can learn from that and not over-commit ourselves at crucial times, then we will play much better,” said Treu.

He described the performances of Cornal Hendricks and Pieter Engelbrecht as two of the most pleasing aspects of Hong Kong.

He hopes they will be able to maintain that level of consistency: “Cornal took a while to settle after his move from the Absa Currie Cup First Division, but he is coming along nicely now. He has a great work ethic, his understanding of the finer detail of Sevens is getting better all the time and he easily had his best tournament last week.

“Pieter struggled for a long time with a leg injury but he showed a lot of commitment and determination in Hong Kong. He adds a bit more physicality to the team and the key for both of them will be to keep their momentum and to be consistent throughout the next two match days.”

Treu described he loss of Afrika as a huge blow, but he is confident his charges will rise to the challenge in Tokyo. “We were able to beat England without Cecil and Paul because the players accepted their extra responsibilities. We need more of the same this weekend,” said Treu.

South Africa, who finished third in Hong Kong, headed the draw in Pool D, where they will face Samoa, Scotland and Portugal.

Following Hong Kong, reigning Series champions New Zealand now lead the standings on 111, just two clear of Fiji on 109. South Africa are third on 93, ahead of England (89) and Samoa (82).

Cup winners - 2011/12 HSBC Sevens World Series

Round 1 - Gold Coast - Fiji
Round 2 - Dubai - England
Round 3 - Port Elizabeth - New Zealand
Round 4 - Wellington - New Zealand
Round 5 - Las Vegas - Samoa
Round 6 - Hong Kong - Fiji

The Springbok Sevens team for Tokyo is:

Chris Dry, Boom Prinsloo, Frankie Horne, Pieter Engelbrecht, Cornal Hendricks, Kyle Brown (captain), Branco du Preez, Dirk Dippenaar, Paul Delport, Renfred Dazel, William Small-Smith, Stephan Dippenaar.

Read more on:    springbok sevens  |  sevens  |  cecil afrika  |  rugby

Duane back to lead Stormers

2015-03-31 09:16


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk


Who is your favourite South African rugby commentator - English or Afrikaans?

Love 2 Meet

Got something you'd like to get off your chest? Got a burning desire to air an opinion? If so, be sure to sign-up on Sport24's FORUM!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

Forum Have your Say on Sport24's brand new Forum!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.