The SA Under 18 Sevens team will be aiming to emulate the 2013 Australian Youth Olympics winners when they participate in the 2014 African Youth Games on 23 and 24 May in Gaborone, Botswana.
Last January, a powerful SA U18 Sevens squad which had outstanding talents such as Warrick Gelant (SA Schools, Junior Springboks) and Duhan van der Merwe (SA Sevens Academy) amongst its ranks, won gold in Sydney at the Australian Youth Olympics.
The SA U18 Sevens are the firm favourites to claim gold at the African Youth Games and the selectors have assembled another talented 12-man squad to represent the Green and Gold at this age group level.
Gavin Beresford, the current Western Province High Schools Sevens coach, will coach the SA U18’s in Botswana. Marco Janse van Vuuren and PJ Toerien are two members of the SA U18 Sevens squad that were both selected for the SA Schools in fifteens in 2013.
Marius Schoeman, the SARU Sevens Academy Manager, said the current crop of players should give good account of themselves in Gaborone.
“These players were earmarked at the 2013 Coca-Cola Youth Week tournaments and we monitored also players in various other tournaments, as well as watching many schools matches. The next step for these players will be to come into contention for intake into the SA Sevens Academy, which is our main feeder for the Springbok Sevens squad,” explains Schoeman, a former veteran Blitzbok.
The SA U18 Sevens squad are currently in Johannesburg busy with preparations before their departure on Tuesday, 20 May to Botswana as part of Team SA.
The SA Under 18 Sevens squad to play in the African Youth Games in Gaborone (with name of high school in brackets):
Edrich Venter (Paul Roos Gym)
Herschelle Jantjies (Paul Roos Gym)
Edwill van der Merwe (Paul Roos Gym)
Jaco Coetzee (Glenwood)
Morne Joubert (Glenwood)
Tshepiso Mahasa (Ben Vorster)
Luigy van Jaarsveld (Marlow Landbou)
Ivan Kunz (Tygerberg)
Eduan Kuyter (Afrikaans Seuns)
Grant Williams (Paarl Gym)
PJ Toerien (Garsfontein)
Marco Janse van Vuuren (Transvalia)
Coach: Gavin Beresford (Tygerberg)