Pools for HSBC SVNS Cape Town revealed
POOL DRAW: The two South African Sevens teams will both face the USA on the opening day of the HSBC SVNS Cape Town next Saturday, with the pools announced shortly after the Springbok Sevens team claimed a fifth consecutive title in Dubai on Sunday.
The Blitzboks, who beat Argentina 12-7 in the Dubai Final, will run out in the Mother City as the top seeds for the tournament in Pool A, with Ireland, USA and Great Britain their opponents in what promises to be an action-packed day of sevens rugby at DHL Stadium.
In the men’s competition, Dubai runners-up Argentina will face Fiji, France and Spain in Pool B, while defending champions Samoa will face old foes, New Zealand, as well as Australia and Canada in Pool C.
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The BlitzBoks arrived in Dubai without head coach Sandile Ngcobo who missed the trip for medical reasons, but assistant coach Snyman was quick to point to his role in the successful defence of their title.
“Coach Sandile deserves a lot of credit for preparing the squad so well over the last couple of months,” said Snyman. “The rest of our management also deserve this win, everyone did more than was ask, like our High-Performance Manager, Marius Schoeman, who travelled with to assist where needed.”
Snyman praised the players.
“We had a very good pre-season and the guys showed that they were ready to play six tough matches.
“The way they worked, based on defence, also showed their willingness to work off the ball and cover each other’s backs and that is a wonderful thing for coaches to see.”
Snyman said he was impressed by the fact that the players also did their talking on the field.
“They said they were going to do it and backed that up with a wonderful performance over the last two days. They showed a lot of character, so all the credit to the players,” Snyman said.
The Springbok Women’s Sevens finished in a commendable 10th position in Dubai after being pipped by Japan in the ninth-place match. They will face France, Canada and the USA in Pool C in Cape Town, in what will be a daunting day for the home side.
France and Canada were losing semifinalists in Dubai and USA made it into the last eight, where they were knocked out by eventual winners, Australia.
Their pool opponents aside, Springbok Women’s Sevens forward Rights Mkhari made a call to arms to their supporters to come and support the two home teams.
“We have always played here courtesy of being the hosts, but this time around, we will compete as a core team in the 2024 HSBC SVNS and that makes a huge difference to us,” said Mkhari.
“Our own event will not be a once-off opportunity for us and we will come into this as best prepared as we have ever been.
“We are also going to be very competitive, we showed that in Dubai this weekend. Imagine having a huge crowd supporting us in Cape Town. I am calling on all to come and support us, it will mean so much for our squad.”
HSBC SVNS Cape Town pools – Women:
Pool A: Australia, Fiji, Japan, Spain
Pool B: New Zealand, Ireland, Brazil, Great Britain
Pool C: France, Canada, USA, South Africa
HSBC SVNS Cape Town pools – Men:
Pool A: South Africa, Ireland, USA, Great Britain
Pool B: Argentina, Fiji, France, Spain
Pool C: New Zealand, Samoa, Australia, Canada