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Bok Sevens squad ready for ‘special experience’ of playing at Cape Town stadium

Blitzboks player James Murphy and Dalvon Blood during a training session at the Hamilton’s rugby clubin Green Point. Picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)

Blitzboks player James Murphy and Dalvon Blood during a training session at the Hamilton’s rugby clubin Green Point. Picture: Phando Jikelo/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Dec 9, 2022


Cape Town - The Cape Town Sevens is back, and Blitzboks captain Siviwe Soyizwapi says he cannot wait to experience “something special” at the Cape Town Stadium this weekend.

The Springbok Sevens side are riding high at the moment after clinching the Dubai Sevens title last week, and will hope to continue with their winning momentum on home soil.

It is the first time that the Cape Town Sevens is being hosted since 2019, due to the Covid-19 lockdown.

The Blitzboks begin their tournament on Friday at 8.03pm against Canada, with their remaining Pool A matches taking place on Saturday against Fiji (11.19am) and France (5pm).

The quarter-finals will also be played on Saturday, with the trophy decider on Sunday night.

Soyizwapi will be hoping that his team can give him a belated birthday present after he turned 30 on Wednesday. “The best thing about (Wednesday) is that we had our hardest session on the field, so I was allowed a slice (of cake) – because I would’ve run it off on the field already!” the SA skipper said.

“We’ve actually really looked forward to getting back here to Cape Town.

Playing in the World Cup (Sevens in September) was great to make the return.

“The Cape Town Sevens is something different, and it’s something special at this time of the year – it’s in December and it’s full-on summer, so it’s exciting.

“We’ve missed it, and I am sure the fans missed it as well. We’re excited to see those supporters out there this weekend.”

Coach Sandile Ngcobo will be hoping that some of the newcomers who starred in Dubai, such as Shilton van Wyk and Ricardo Duarttee, can excel again alongside stalwarts such as Zain Davids, Branco du Preez and Impi Visser.

“Our first game is the main focus. (Sorting out) our roles and responsibilities, having the right knowledge of who we are playing and what they are doing, and just enjoying the moment and staying present,” Ngcobo said. “We have two identities – one on the field and one off the field. In the latter, it is about being a brotherhood, caring for each other and driving a shared culture.

We’re nailing that one, so that drives us forward very well.

“The on-field identity is defence. We want to defensively dominate the collisions, and that’s what we said we are going to live – and not talk about.

We do not want people to score tries against us and if they do, they need to work really hard for it. “We want to be dominant in defence, and that attitude will not change this weekend.”

There is sure to be a party atmosphere at Cape Town Stadium, with fans usually dressing up as their favourite characters and enjoying a full day of sevens rugby at the iconic 2010 Fifa World Cup venue.

Local acts such as Zakes Bantwini and Emo Adams will also be among the performers throughout the weekend.

Independent Media understands that over 50 percent of tickets have been sold, and spectators can still purchase tickets for all three days from – with prices ranging from R150 to R825.

Cape Times