JOHANNESBURG – Muller du Plessis will become Blitzbok #168 this weekend when he takes to the field for the Springbok Sevens in the USA Sevens, to be played at the Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas.
Springbok Sevens coach Neil Powell included the 19-year-old in the final 12-man playing squad for the tournament, the fifth of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, where Du Plessis will realise his dream to represent his country at this level.
Powell said it was an exciting time for the team. They will welcome Du Plessis into the fray and will also take to the field with two new sponsors on board, after Castle Free and FNB confirmed their support to the team.
“We are very thankful and hope to return that investment with a good performance,” said Powell. “We have a number of young players in the squad and we have a very competitive pool, but we will do our best. They need to go out and play as this is the only way they will learn and develop.”
The Blitzboks face Wales (03h34) and Canada (06h35) early Saturday morning (SA time).
“We will come up against two very different opponents on the first day,” said Powell. “Wales are very elusive and like to throw the ball around, while the Canadians are very direct and physical. Hopefully, we can give the younger players proper game time this weekend, but we need to start well to make that possible.”
The Springbok Sevens team for the HSBC USA Sevens:
1 Ryan Oosthuizen (4 tournaments, 12 matches, 0 points)
2 Philip Snyman (captain – 50 tournaments, 225 matches, 321 points, 58 tries)
3 Dylan Sage (19 tournaments, 104 matches, 110 points, 22 tries)
4 Zain Davids (7 tournaments, 25 matches, 10 points, 2 tries)
5 Werner Kok (33 tournaments, 165 matches, 370 points, 74 tries)
6 Kyle Brown (62 tournaments, 312 matches, 410 points, 82 tries)
7 Branco du Preez (58 tournaments, 291 matches, 1107 points, 81 tries)
8 Muller du Plessis (uncapped)
9 Selvyn Davids (1 tournament, 5 matches, 2 points)
10 Cecil Afrika (57 tournaments, 297 matches, 1368 points, 165 tries)
11 Siviwe Soyizwapi (13 tournaments, 59 matches, 180 points, 36 tries)
12 Stedman Gans (6 tournaments, 23 matches, 10 points, 2 tries)
13 Ruhan Nel (24 tournaments, 127 matches, 217 points, 43 tries)
African News Agency (ANA)