The Springbok Sevens team will face hosts England on Sunday in the Cup quarter-finals of the Marriott London Sevens tournament after a historic day for captain Frankie Horne.
The BlitzBokke skipper participated in a world record 50th consecutive tournament appearance in the HSBC World Sevens Series on Saturday, which saw his side securing early wins over Australia and France in pool A of the competition to secure a spot in the Cup quarter-finals of the last tournament of the 2012/13 series.
The South Africans edged out Australia 5-0 in their opening match and then rallied late to beat France 17-14 to remain on track for a third consecutive tournament win in the series.
A 12-19 defeat to USA in their final pool match ended a 13 match winning streak, but it was still a remarkable day to Horne and his team, who could win a fourth title on Sunday following tournament wins in Las Vegas, Tokyo and Glasgow, with the last two consecutive.
Four new players were jetted in after the Scottish win last weekend and one of them, Cecil Afrika, provided the spark against France. Trailing with less than a minute the go, the highly rated former IRB Sevens Player of the Year scored the winning try.
“We just needed to survive on day one and we did that. I am pleased with our effort and although we have a tough clash against England in front of their home crowd tomorrow, we have shown in the last couple of tournaments that we have the right attitude and mentality when it comes to play-off matches,” coach Paul Treu said.
South Africa plays England at 12h34 on Sunday.
New Zealand will play Argentina, Fiji faces Kenya and Australia will play USA in the other Cup quarters.