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Blitzboks to face England in London quarters

Sevens

CAPE TOWN – The Blitzboks may not have made their first day of the London Sevens as “special” as they would have liked, but they did enough to book a quarter-final spot against England on Sunday (12.42pm SA time).

In the build-up to the last leg of the World Sevens Series at Twickenham, Blitzboks playmaker Rosko Specman said that they wanted to make the last event of the series a “special one”.

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Siviwe Soyizwapi scored a superb try for the Blitzboks against USA. Photo: Martin Seras Lima, BackpagePix

And although they had to be happy with a 24-12 defeat to the USA in their last match on Saturday, there were a number of moments that were, well, very special indeed.

Against the USA, who now top Pool A, the Blitzboks scored two tries to three, and the Americans were first to get points on the score-sheet when hooker Stephen Tomasin put in a brilliant kick-ahead before gathering it himself.

He was taken down and managed to get an offload away, before quickly getting back up on his feet to run in support and finish off the move that he started all the way back in own half.

The Blitzboks’ Ruhan Nel added one of those special moments for Neil Powell’s team when he neatly gathered his own perfectly-hooked chip kick and finished off with a strong run to score, and Cecil Afrika made no mistake with the conversion to level the scores.

Ben Pinkelman responded soon afterwards with another try for the North Americans, but the Blitzboks’ Siviwe Soyizwapi made sure that his team didn’t trail on the scoreboard too long with a stunning try.

And as great as Soyizwapi’s silky running at blistering pace was, great credit should go to Werner Kok for his huge work chasing down a chip kick and securing the ball on the ground. And, to top it all off, he got an accurate little pop away to Soyizwapi.

But unfortunately that’s where the scoring ended for the Blitzboks, but not for the USA, with Andrew Durutalo running in a last five-pointer for the USA.

Earlier in the day, the Blitzboks dealt with Wales (12-10) in their second fixture, and after being 5-0 down, Specman created some magic when he produced a stunning run and showed his freakish ability to accelerate off the mark when he scored the Blitzboks’ first try.

Skipper Philip Snyman also impressed down the line before sliding over in the corner, and in the dying seconds, Wales failed to convert their second try that would have levelled the score.

In the first game of the day, the Blitzboks beat Kenya 12-10. Nel managed to dot down just before halftime, while Specman showcased his skill when he ran the length of the field to put South Africa up 12-5, before the Kenyans added another unconverted try to narrow the scores.

Independent Media

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