“The SA Rugby Sevens Academy has produced some real talent in recent years”
The Loss of a number of experienced players and injury issues to boot? No problem.
So says Blitzbok skipper Philip Snyman as his side prepare for the Hamilton leg of the World Sevens Series this weekend.
In fact, the Springbok Sevens captain believes they have the perfect mix of experience, skill and youthful excitement to continue on the very successful footpath they’ve cleared over the last few seasons.
Snyman – who has racked up 56 tournament appearances and won three World Series titles (two as captain) – is a big contributor to that valuable bag of experience, while Kyle Brown (67 tournaments), Chris Dry (64), and Branco du Preez (63) are the other seasoned campaigners. Justin Geduld (38) and Werner Kok (39) also bring a good amount of know-how.
And when it comes to that exciting youthfulness, Impi Visser (two tournaments), Selvyn Davids (seven) and Dewald Human (six) certainly have the ability to do more than their part when it comes making up for their single-digit tournament visits.
“The SA Rugby Sevens Academy has produced some real talent in recent years,” said Snyman.
“We have lost the likes of Rosko Specman, Dylan Sage and Tim Agaba from last year’s team and still have a couple of injured players back home, but all the right ingredients are in this year’s group to make it successful again.
Snyman also explained that their slow start to the 2018/19 season (the defending, back-to-back Series winners ended sixth in Dubai and third in Cape Town) could actually be a good thing.
“The old hands know what is needed and the young ones will bring it on. The fact that we had a slower start was a good thing as this time around we will pick up speed and gather momentum as we train and play together more and more.
Other way around
“In previous years, we had fast starts and had to hold on towards the end of the season. This time it looks to be the other way around,” he said.
“It is also wonderful to play in the tournament this weekend where Kyle Brown will equal Frankie Horne’s record of 68 World Series tournaments and it’s great to have Chris Dry back as well, after more than a year on the sidelines. I never had serious injuries, while Kyle and Chris did, so it will be a superb feeling to run out with both them.”
“We trained hard the last couple of weeks. We need to leave all the emotions and personal achievements behind, and go and execute.”