The Springbok Sevens have assembled in Mossel Bay for a final training camp before their departure to San Francisco for the Sevens World Cup from 20-22 July.
The Blitzboks’ final 12-man squad for the World Cup will be announced on Wednesday and coach Neil Powell said he will use this camp to fine-tune their preparations for the last tournament of the season.
Last month the Blitzboks won the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series crown for a second consecutive season and also placed fourth at the Commonwealth Games in Australia in April, with the Melrose Cup – the only major silverware yet to be owned by South Africa – the final hurdle in a bumper season.
‘We are now fully focused on what we want to achieve in San Francisco and all our planning is geared towards being ready for that first match,’ said Powell.
‘The [knockout] format of the World Cup is such that no team can afford even the slightest slip-up, and we need to ensure our timing is right.’
South Africa will face the winner of Ireland and Chile in their first match of the event, at AT&T Park on Saturday (6.15am SA time).
‘We will be fine-tuning all aspects of our play this week,’ said Powell. ‘The game plan is well drilled in as we have just played finished the Sevens Series, but the application and commitment come with every match we play.’
The Blitzboks played a warm-up match against the Golden Lions in Johannesburg last week and Powell was pleased with the outcome.
‘’The first highlight was that all players came through that without any new injury concerns, while guys such as Rosko Specman and Selvyn Davids showed good progress in their return to the play-phase of recovery.’
Powell confirmed that Chris Dry and Stedman Gans will not form part of the final week as they will not be fit to play next weekend. The team session concludes on Tuesday.
Davids is featured in the latest issue of the Team SA magazine, on sale now.
Photo: Lee Warren/Gallo Images