Cape Town — James Murphy, Shaun Williams and Shilton van Wyk have been called into the Springbok Sevens squad for the Canada Sevens tournament at BC Place in Vancouver this weekend.
The trio depart for Canada on Monday to replace Mfundo Ndhlovu (concussion), Sakoyiso Makata (rib injury) and Lubabalo Dobela (groin injury) — on debut at the National Stadium — after they all picked up injuries during last weekend’s Singapore Sevens, where the Blitzboks placed sixth.
Murphy last played for the Blitzboks in Canada in September 2021, while Van Wyk was named in the Dream Team for the second Dubai tournament late last year, after making his debut in the first one.
Williams joined the squad in Seville as a replacement for skipper Siviwe Soyizwapi. He made the most of his opportunity in Spain and was named in the tournament’s Dream Team.
Speaking before their departure, Murphy said that while he feels for Makata, he is keen to return to Canada, where he scored his first try for the Blitzboks as the team dominated in both Vancouver and Edmonton to clinch the shortened World Sevens Series.
“Yes, it is sad for Sako as he was in good form and it is never nice for players to return (home) due to injury. I am well prepared for this though, and I have worked hard to be ready when such an opportunity came up.”
Van Wyk added: “I loved every minute of the two Dubai events and realised how special it is to be playing for your country on the world stage and amongst such a wonderful group of guys.
“Sadly, I missed out the next tournaments due to injury, but I am raring to go in Vancouver. I hope to bring energy to the squad, as the guys are disappointed about the performances in Singapore.”
The Blitzboks will look to get back to winning ways in Canada after crashing out of the Cup quarter-finals against Fiji at the National Stadium. Prior to the Singapore event, the South Africans had won six tournaments on the trot.
They have been drawn in Pool C, where they will face Spain, Canada and Australia on Saturday.
Springbok Sevens squad for Vancouver:
1. James Murphy 2. Ryan Oosthuizen 3. Impi Visser 4. Zain Davids 5. Christie Grobbelaar 6. JC Pretorius 7. Ronald Brown 8. Selvyn Davids 9. Shaun Williams 10. Dewald Human 11. Siviwe Soyizwapi (captain) 12. Shilton van Wyk 13. Darren Adonis