Brown has Olympic dream

2014-09-16 14:41
Kyle Brown (Gallo Images)
Stellenbosch - Springbok Sevens captain Kyle Brown says the experience at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in July has motivated him to play through to the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Brown has proven to be an inspirational captain on and off the field, leading the Blitzbokke to several tournament titles in recent years. He's set momentum up front with strong performances on attack and defence, while he's also an encouraging voice within the squad, especially during those high-pressure moments.

However, he admitted that at one stage he felt that that he wouldn't make it to sevens rugby's grand stage, the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

Brown has struggled with several serious injuries over the past year, including concussion, shoulder, rib and ankle injuries. By the time Team South Africa heads to Brazil, Brown would also be coming to the end of his career at the age of 29.

However, the Blitzbokke’s journey to winning gold at the Commonwealth Games, beating New Zealand in the final, has reignited his inspiration.

"I admit, I thought the Olympic Games would be a step too far for me," Brown told the MyPlayers website. "But there was something unique... something special about the experience at the Commonwealth Games that has inspired me to go all the way to Rio in 2016.

"I haven't had the opportunity to compete in many multi-sport events. I wasn't part of the squad that competed in the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, so the experience in Glasgow was eye-opening.

"Staying in the athletes’ village, you see all these sportsmen and women from around the world focused and determined to be the best. They are so focused to win a medal and earn a legacy. With sports minister Fikile Mbalula and SASCOC president Gideon Sam handing out our jerseys, that also made me feel like we're we playing for something greater. I want to be a part of that experience in 2016."

Brown's new lease of motivation will be a big boost for the team heading into the 2014-15 World Series.

While the Blitzbokke will be favourites to secure Olympic qualification (the top four nations on the overall standings earn automatic qualification), they will be aiming for the World Series title.

"We will be aiming for consistency. If we can achieve the necessary results every tournament, we will be in the running for the World Series title," said Brown. "It's always great to beat New Zealand in the final. But we want to be able to beat anybody during the playoffs.

"We know we are able to beat anybody on our day. We just need to perform at our best consistently."

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