Every week we give readers of BOKzine the opportunity to ask questions of South African rugby personalities. Simply sign up for our weekly fan newsletter, BOKzine, by clicking here!
Your Question: Hi Paul Thank you for all you do for 7's rugby! If you could choose any players from the current SA pool of super rugby players to join the 7's, who would that be? – Trixi Scott
Paul answers: I am happy with the players at my disposal. However, as a coach you’re always looking to improve your squad so if I had to choose one it would most probably be Francois Hougaard.
Your Question: Hi Paul Why do you continue to select Stephen Dippenaar when he's not big/strong enough to be a forward; he doesn't have real pace like Branco or Cecil and; he is not at all creative?He also consistently makes the wrong decisions on attack and his defence is mediocre at best.To pick someone who has all these attributes and could not even make the Bulls starting Currie Cup team seems to defy logic. – Blake
Paul answers: Hi Blake, Sevens is completely different to the fifteen man game and sometimes it takes players a while to adjust. Stephan has a lot of potential and that is why he is part of our squad at the moment.
Your Question: Hi Paul Unlucky about all the injuries. So, we're still losing to Fiji and NZ pretty regularly. Have you changed your view on picking some bigger, more physical guys for those games? Of course, we need speedsters too, but I think we lack balance. I think you're doing a fantastic job with the players you have by the way! – Wes
Paul answers: Hi Wes, many thanks for the kind words and encouragements. We have a very good and professional competition structure in South Africa and that is why the vast majority of players are involved in the Varsity Cup, Vodacom Cup, Vodacom Super Rugby and the Absa Currie Cup. I would love to involve the type of player you’re talking about in our system, but they are all contracted and therefore committed to their respective provincial unions.
Your Question: Hi Paul Without giving too much away, please can you explain why our game tactic seems to be holding on to the ball and looking for contact as opposed beating the man on the outside and passing out wide?This seems to work effectively for NZ and Fiji and contradicts the nature of 7s in using the space of a full rugby pitch.We seem to concede a lot of turnovers by constantly taking it up the middle. – Blake
Paul answers: Blake, much like any other team, we have our own unique style of playing. Ideally, I would prefer the team to play the expansive way, but New Zealand and Fiji have different styled players than what we have. We are working hard on our decision making and to be as effective and clinical as possible in the execution of our moves.
Your Question: What is going on with our defens.Is there not 2 or more game brakers. – Cyril
Paul answers: Hi Cyril, we are constantly working on our defence and are especially mindful not to concede soft tries. Unfortunately for us, we have been severely hit by injuries to Kyle Brown, Frankie Horne, Boom Prinsloo, Cecil Afrika, Branco du Preez, Pieter Engelbrecht and Paul Delport – almost our entire first choice team. That meant we constantly had to change the team which also meant adjustments in our approach according to the players we had available.
Your Question: Hi Paul Are you able to tell us what happened to Tshotsho Mbvane? He burst on to the scene last year and looked exceptional when he played because he has a Maori like sidestep and pace but we haven't seen him at all this year. I think we need a wing like him in the side again to give us some real penetration and pace out wide. – Blake
Paul answers: Tshotsho is very much in my future plans. He is currently in his final rehab phase with us in Stellenbosch after injuring his knee last year while playing for the DHL WP Under-21’s.
Your Question: I do not have a question but would just like to say a Congratulations to the Blitzbokke you guys have nothing to be ashamed of. You always go and do your best for the team and country and you all are to be comended for that. GO BLITZBOKKE YOU ARE THE BEST! – Lee
Paul answers: Many thanks Lee, we value your support and the team always go out to perform to the best of their ability not only for themselves or the team but also for the country.