SARU President Regan Hoskins and CEO Jurie Roux on Monday both congratulated the Springbok Sevens team on their gold medal performance at the World Games in Cali, Colombia.
Kyle Brown and his team clinched the gold medal late on Friday evening with a 33-24 victory over Argentina to finish the two-day tournament unbeaten.
This was the first gold medal for the Springbok Sevens at the multi-code event. They won bronze and silver respectively at the previous two World Games.
Hoskins said the gold medal was a just reward for the team’s hard work this season, which saw them finished as runners-up to New Zealand in the HSBC Sevens World Series after winning three tournament titles.
“The guys did extremely well in Cali, not only on the field but also in their efforts to contribute to the overall team effort of Team SA,” said Hoskins.
“On behalf of SARU and the local rugby fraternity I would like to congratulate all players and management on a fantastic job,” added Hoskins.
“The squad of 12 players contained a mixture of experience and exciting young players, so the gold medal will hopefully inspire more youngsters to play Sevens rugby and motivate the current contracted squad members to improve their game even further.
“The coaching staff of Vuyo Zangqa and Neil Powell deserve credit for the team’s preparation, which came at the end of a long and busy season.
The players, under the leadership of Kyle Brown, also deserve huge praise especially after suffering the disappointment of losing in the quarterfinals at the Rugby Sevens World Cup in Moscow last month,” said Hoskins.
SARU CEO, Jurie Roux, joined Hoskins in congratulating the team and said he hoped the World Games would pave the way for further success next season.
“The team played superbly and have done SARU, SASCOC and our country proud. SARU invested a lot of resources, planning and effort in the establishment of the Springbok Sevens training base at the Stellenbosch Sports Academy, where the contracted group prepare fulltime in a very professional environment.
“The emergence of several exciting young players such as Seabelo Senatla, Justin Geduld and WJ Strydom is an indication that these efforts are starting to bear fruit.
Apart from the contracted Springbok Sevens group, the SA Sevens Academy is also up and running. Furthermore, I hope that our efforts to prepare and ensure that the SA Women’s Sevens team become more competitive will also start to deliver success in the near future,” said Roux.