Blitzboks gear up for Olympic campaign

2016-08-08 18:13
Neil Powell (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Springbok Sevens coach Neil Powell was in a positive frame of mind a day before the start of the Rugby Sevens tournament at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

The Blitzboks are competing in Brazil as part of Team South Africa, and according to the coach, the squad is looking forward to their first match on Tuesday against Spain in Pool B of the competition at the Deordora Stadium in Rio.

“It is an exciting time for the Rugby Sevens team here in Rio. We have been here for a week or so and are ready and keen to get underway,” Powell said.

“As expected, there were some upsets in the women’s event, and we have no doubt that it will be the same in the men's tournament, so we need to make sure that we are well-prepared come Tuesday, and that we are switched on for our first match against Spain. We have only one focus at this stage and that is our opening match. We are not looking at anything else outside of those 14 minutes.

“Once that match is done, we will focus on France and our match later in the evening. There is a good spirit amongst the players and we are confident that we can deliver the goods, provided we stick to our structures and processes.”

South Africa will play in Pool B of the tournament where they will face Spain and France on Tuesday and Australia on Wednesday. The first of the quarter-finals will be played later on Wednesday, with Thursday hosting the various playoffs for the final.

Springbok Sevens squad:

Kyle Brown (captain), Tim Agaba, Philip Snyman, Werner Kok, Dylan Sage, Kwagga Smith, Rosko Specman, Cheslin Kolbe, Cecil Afrika, Justin Geduld, Juan de Jongh, Seabelo Senatla

Travelling reserves: Chris Dry, Francois Hougaard

South African fixtures (SA times):

Tuesday, August 9
16:30 - South Africa v Spain
21:30 - South Africa v France

Wednesday, August 10
16:30 - South Africa v Australia

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