Port Elizabeth - He was a Currie Cup winner with Western Province less than a month and a half ago in the 15-man game, but Seabelo Senatla has no difficulties readjusting to Sevens as he sees the code as his home, the supersport.com website reports.
In two World Sevens Series tournaments so far this season, the Welkom flyer has racked up an impressive 12 tries and is well on his way to his best campaign yet in the Springbok Sevens team. He will be a man to watch for the opposition teams in the Cell C Nelson Mandela Bay Sevens that gets underway at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Saturday, and says he feels he is in great form.
“I will never forget Sevens because it is my home. It is more difficult for me to go from Sevens to 15s than the other way around,” said Senatla in the build-up to the Port Elizabeth event, which is the third leg of the World Series.
“This is my home and base, and as you know, when you go home, everything is familiar to you and you accept things as a given. There is security, you know what it is about. You always remember everything you have at home and the love of your parents, and it is the same with me and Sevens.”
Senatla was part of Heyneke Meyer’s Springbok touring squad last month, his first selection to that level in the 15-man game, but he says he has no plans to switch permanently to the conventional code just yet.
“I am contracted to play Springbok Sevens until 2016 and I will stick to it until then. It will be my priority until the Olympics. After that it will be time for a decision - do I carry on with Sevens, or do I set myself a new goal and a new target and start to focus exclusively on 15s. But that is all in the future. Right now my focus is different.”
Senatla was injured at the start of his two previous seasons where he was involved with the Blitzbokke so he finds it difficult to make a comparison between his form now and how he was placed before.
“This is really the first time I’ve started off the season but it has been a good start for me and I suppose 12 is a good number of tries to have after two tournaments so I think it could be a really great year for me.”
The team is also well placed, two points behind Fiji on the overall log after the Gold Coast and Dubai events, but Senatla says it is too early to be looking at the log.
“You have to just take every tournament as it comes, and focus on the next challenge,” he said.
“We weren’t so great at Gold Coast but we were excellent in Dubai and I agree with our skipper Kyle Brown that it is down to us having a good hard look at ourselves and agreeing that we had the potential to do better than we were. I really do believe that if we are in synch and playing to our full potential, no-one can stop us.
“At the moment it is all about building blocks. We need to become consistent, and to do that, the first priority is to make the semi-finals of every tournament, and then we can take it from there. But obviously if we win here, we will be on top of the log at Christmas, and that will be a great place for us to be.”