Blitzbokke add new blood
Cape Town - Springbok Sevens coach, Paul Treu, has added five players to his training group in preparation for the last two tournaments of the HSBC Sevens World Series in Glasgow and London, while two more new faces will join his group next Monday.
Okkie Kruger (Tuks, loose foward), Robbie van Schalkwyk (Shimlas, utility back), Jamba Ulengo (Shimlas, left wing), Alec Mhlanga (CUT, right wing) and Damian de Allende (UCT, right wing) were all added to the injury-hit SA Sevens squad.
Fullback Clayton Blommetjies, who starred for Tukkies in their Varsity Cup final victory over Maties on Monday night in Pretoria, as well as Western Province flanker Reuben Johannes will join the training group next Monday.
William Small-Smith and Tshotsho Mbovane are both unavailable because of SA Under-20 commitments. The Junior Boks assembled in Cape Town on Tuesday for a two-week training camp and a series of matches against the Argentine Pumitas in Stellenbosch.
IRB Sevens Player of the Year, Cecil Afrika, will miss the UK trip after he was ruled out for ten weeks following his knee injury in Hong Kong.
Paul Delport (knee), Boom Prinsloo and Frankie Horne (both head injuries) will meanwhile all undergo scans on Thursday to further determine the seriousness of their knocks sustained in Japan.
Treu said he was disappointed to lose star playmaker Afrika, but he is also looking forward to work with the newcomers.
“They all played exceptionally well in the Varsity Cup and the Vodacom Cup and deserve their chances. We have a number of injury concerns so it makes sense for us to include these promising players,” said Treu.
The Blitzbokke depart on 29 April for the United Kingdom and will announce their travelling party on 24 April. The South Africans are currently third on the World Series log behind New Zealand and Fiji.