George - The Springbok Sevens squad clawed their way into the plate
final of the George Sevens by securing a thrilling last gasp 24-21
victory over Wales on Saturday.
Cecil Afrika proved in Dubai last week that he is one of the South
African team's most potent weapons and continued to do so as the
speedster ran in three tries to see his side to victory.
His most important of the three tries came minutes after the full-time
siren sounded and brought the local crowd to their feet when all hope
appeared to be lost.
As has become the tradition when the Sevens Boks play, Afrika was first
to score and he also had the last say when he converted the match
Wales opened their scoring though Tom Isaacs and snatched the lead from the hosts when Rys Jones slotted the conversion.
Afrika's second try gave the Boks a slim 10-7 lead at halftime as Wales
started showing that the wet conditions may count in their favour.
One of the key moments in the match was the try scored by Boks skipper Kyle Brown with less than three minutes left to play.
Wales, however, were not about to give up and tested the South African defence to it's limits.
Despite a brilliant try-saving tackle by Paul Delport, the visitors
added five more points as Aaron Shingler capitalised after the Boks lost
a crucial lineout on their own try line.
Again the lead changed hands and, at that stage, it looked almost
certain that the semifinal could be the last match the Springboks would
play in the competition.
Gareth Davies then took his time in converting the try, but a poor kick-off ensured the Boks had one last chance to bag the win.
The Springboks next face Argentina – whom they beat 29-5 in a pool match on Friday – in the plate final.
South Africa 24 (10): Tries - Cecil Afrika (3), Kyle Brown. Conversions – Afrika (2).
Wales 21 (7): Tries - Tom Isaacs, Richard Pugh, Aaron Shingler. Conversions - Rhys Jones (2), Gareth Davies.