CAPE TOWN – When it comes to Springbok Sevens thoroughbreds, they don’t come much purer than Kyle Brown.
The Blitzboks stalwart will this weekend equal the record set by Frankie Horne when he makes his 68th tournament appearance at the Hamilton leg of the 2018/19 World Sevens Series.
Last week,Blitzbok coach Neil Powell said that Brown is the kind of player who does everything for - and to improve - the Blitzboks.
And if you’ve followed the way he’s led the unit in the past and the type of player he is, you wouldn’t have much reason to disagree.
Brown’s pedigree will come in especially handy this weekend when Powell’s side - featuring four Hamilton rookies - will look to build on the third-place finish they secured in Cape Town after ending sixth in the opening leg in Dubai, although Powell has emphasised the importance of growth and on-field improvement over results.
Following the departure of a number of experienced players to pursue their Fifteens ambitions, Brown’s circuit resume will certainly aid a side depleted of a wealth of experience but brimming with talent.
He comes with the “old hands” the rebuilding Blitzboks need.
And as some of the squad members will look to ace their roles in the side and make a statement, Brown will be there to help them, every step of the way in Australasia.
His pending record-equaling appearance will not only be the ultimate reward for one of South African Sevens’ hardest-serving men, but it will also be one in which the younger players can again learn from his know-how.
And whether Powell’s men tick his performance-based boxes or manage to crack into another final in New Zealand, Brown’s weekend will be a special one.
And knowing the kind of player he is, his personal achievements and contributions probably won’t matter much. But it can certainly help the Blitzboks make this weekend a memorable one.@WynonaLouw