Paul Delport resigns as Springbok women’s sevens coach

a man with greying hair speaks during an interview

Springbok Women’s Sevens coach Paul Delport on Wednesday resigned from his position. Picture: Shaun Roy/BackpagePix

Published Oct 12, 2022


Johannesburg - SA Rugby on Wednesday announced Paul Delport has resigned from his position as coach of the Springbok women’s sevens side.

South Africa finished 14th in the Rugby World Cup Sevens in Cape Town last month, which would turn out to be Delport’s last assignment with the team.

The 37-year-old Deport took over the coaching reins of the side in 2017 and apart from HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series tournaments, guided the team to two Rugby World Cup Sevens and two Commonwealth Games tournaments. South Africa also won the Rugby Africa Women’s Sevens Cup three times under Delport’s coaching.

“We want to thank Paul for his coaching tenure, he will be missed and hopefully he will not be lost to rugby completely,” said SA Rugby president Mark Alexander.

“Paul has played a huge role in South African rugby, first as a player at age-group level – where he captained the SA Under-19 and Under-21 teams – and later as a Blitzbok player, where he was also captain of the national team.

“His coaching ability was soon recognised, hence his elevation to SA Rugby Sevens Academy coach and then the coach of our national women's sevens team. We want to thank him for his massive contribution in three different national set-ups. Not many can say that.”

Delport handed in his resignation earlier this month following the Rugby World Cup Sevens tournament and said he has no regrets.

“I had a wonderful time working with an amazing bunch of players,” said Delport.

“It is a pity we could not quite complete our run to push for core status in 2020 due to the Covid pandemic, but that is life.

“I was privileged to coach some exceptional athletes, worked with great people and make friends all over the world. I wish the team all the best going forward and hope they get all the support needed to become a full-time professional set-up again.”

SA Rugby’s High Performance Manager for Women’s Rugby, Lynne Cantwell, said it is important for the momentum picked up by the Springbok Women's Sevens to be sustained, adding that an announcement on Delport’s successor will be made in due course.

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