Springbok Women’s Sevens coach Renfred Dazel and his team depart for Amsterdam on Sunday night knowing that they will have to deliver their best performance of the season to make their presence felt at the IRB Women’s Sevens World Series in Amsterdam on May 16 and 17.
The event marks the last leg of the IRB Women’s Sevens World Series, and is the only tournament South Africa secured an invite to.
The team will travel to Amsterdam via Munich, and are set to arrive in Amsterdam on Monday afternoon at 13h45.
South Africa will face Australia, Russia and France in a challenging pool, with Australia currently trailing series leaders New Zealand by only two points going into the final tournament, while Russia are in joint-fourth position on the standings.
France, meanwhile, secured their entry into the tournament through an invite, but they also participated in the Dubai and China events earlier this season, which should give them some confidence as they have been exposed to the high level of competition in the World Series.
“This is a very important tournament for us because it offers the opportunity to measure where we are in terms of our standard of play compared to the top nations in the world,” said Dazel.
“Fortunately we participated in the Hong Kong Invitational and we come off a series victory in the Confederation of African Rugby (CAR) Women’s Sevens tournament in Kenya, so we will enter the tournament with some momentum. However, we are under no illusions that this will be our toughest test of the season, and we will have to deliver our best performance to make our presence felt.”
Dazel was confident that the warm-up matches they played against the Springbok Women’s 15-a-side players at their recent training camp in Cape Town would assist the team with their match fitness.
Following the camp, the Springbok Women’s Sevens had the opportunity to work with former Cheetahs lock Barend Pieterse to iron out the problems in their lineouts, which Dazel hoped would boost their performance in Amsterdam.
“I am comfortable with our preparation, so hopefully all the hard work we have put in at training in the last few months will pay off,” said the coach.
“After the training camp in Cape Town we spent a fair amount of time on the technical aspects of our game and Barend Pieterse assisted us with our lineout play, so it is now up to the players to implement that correctly on the field.
“Although we are expecting a tough test, we are excited about the tournament.”
Springbok Women’s Sevens squad for IRB Women’s Sevens World Series:
Zenay Jordaan (captain)