WATCH: A proper roller coaster ride of emotions - Blitzboks coach
CAPE TOWN – In a scene reminiscent of the 2008 Dubai Sevens – in which Mzwandile Stick kicked what was called ‘the greatest goalkick in Sevens history’ – the current crop of Blitzboks emulated their counterparts of yesteryear at a packed Dignity Health Sports Park on Monday morning (SA time).
The sudden death victory in the final of the Los Angeles Sevens was made all the more unbelievable as the Springboks trailed 19-0 after five minutes into the match.
The winning score came in extra time after the Blitzboks scored a converted try deep into injury time to draw level with Fiji, with Branco du Preez kicking a brilliant conversion of his own try to extend the match into the sudden-death, winner-takes-all period.
The South Africans then scored the golden try courtesy of Sako Makata - who was patiently worked into space – in extra time to claim their fifth USA Sevens title.
“The odds were against us with only one second left on the clock, but that was all we needed...” wrote one of the heroes of the match, the veteran Branco du Preez on social media.
“This was a proper roller coaster of emotions, but I think that try (by skipper Stedman Gans just before the halftime break) made us believe that we could still come back.” said coach Neil Powell following the final.
Watch: the Springboks bench as Sako Makata scores the winning try:
Watch: Rookie Angelo Davids’ emotional response after the final whistle: