Geduld enjoying playmaking responsibilities

Tue, 31 Jan 2017 09:37

INTERVIEW: Justin Geduld believes he is afforded the necessary freedom on the field to express himself in his role as Springbok Sevens playmaker when the Sydney Sevens kicks off on Saturday.

Geduld, who has played in 28 tournaments for the BlitzBoks, was hugely influential in the team's performance in Wellington last weekend, where South Africa claimed a second tournament title in the 2016/17 World Rugby Sevens Series.

With all-time leading points' scorer, Cecil Afrika, ruled out for the trip to Wellington and Sydney due to a knee strain, Geduld was entrusted with the role of starting pivot and did not disappoint. In fact, he enjoyed the added responsibility, the 23-year old said.

"I have been in the starting role before, so it was nothing new to me," said Geduld.

"The unfortunate injury to Cecil was a setback for all of us, but I realised this was an opportunity for me to step up and grab the opportunity with both hands. I had to get the team and the coach to have confidence in me and that was great to see that I managed that."

Geduld scored 33 points in Wellington, but also made a telling contribution with his pinpoint kick-offs, defence and direction on attack.

"One has to be yourself and express yourself out there – you cannot try to be someone else," said the BlitzBok playmaker.

"It helps that we have been together as a team for a long time now, as the guys know what to expect from each other. I can play with the freedom I need and I know the coach will back me."

The Capetonian said it will be important for the team to forget about the tournament win in Wellington and to start afresh in Sydney.

"No one is going to give us any hand-outs here. If we want to be successful in Sydney as well, we will have to earn it the hard way. We are all aware that we start at zero again," Geduld added.

These sentiments were shared by veteran forward Chris Dry.

"We will have a target on our backs, that is a given," said Dry, who has played in 55 tournaments for South Africa.

"It was nice to win last weekend, but they will be coming for us in Sydney. The challenge for us will be to have the same mind set from last weekend, where we believed in the processes and the team. We will have to play for each other again, but that is the fun part."

South Africa will face Japan, Kenya and England on Saturday.

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sat, 16 December 2017
Treviso v Scarlets 13h00 Stadio Comunale di Monigo
Montpellier v Glasgow Warriors 13h00 Altrad Stadium
Racing Metro v Castres 15h15 Stade Yves-du-Manoir
Leinster v Exeter Chiefs 15h15 Aviva Stadium
Bath v Toulon 17h30 Recreation Ground
Sun, 17 December 2017
Wasps v La Rochelle 13h00 Ricoh Arena
Clermont Auvergne v Saracens 15h15 Stade Marcel-Michelin
Ospreys v Northampton Saints 15h15 Liberty Stadium
Leicester Tigers v Munster 17h30 Welford Road
Fri, 22 December 2017
Wasps v Gloucester 22h00 Ricoh Arena
Newcastle Falcons v Harlequins 22h00 Kingston Park
Northampton Saints v Exeter Chiefs 22h00 Franklin's Gardens
Leicester Tigers v Saracens 22h00 Welford Road
Worcester Warriors v Leicester Tigers 22h00 Sixways
Sale Sharks v Bath 22h00 AJ Bell Stadium
RESULT SCORE
Fri, 15 December 2017
Ulster v Harlequins 52 | 24
Mon, 11 December 2017
Saracens v Clermont Auvergne 14 | 46
Sun, 10 December 2017
Exeter Chiefs v Leinster 8 | 18
La Rochelle v Wasps 49 | 29
Harlequins v Ulster 5 | 17
Sat, 09 December 2017
Munster v Leicester Tigers 33 | 10
Castres v Racing Metro 16 | 13
Northampton Saints v Ospreys 32 | 43
Toulon v Bath 24 | 20
Scarlets v Treviso 33 | 28
Fri, 08 December 2017
Glasgow Warriors v Montpellier 22 | 29
Sun, 03 December 2017
Harlequins v Saracens 20 | 19
Sat, 02 December 2017
Cheetahs v Scarlets 28 | 21
Munster v Ospreys 36 | 10
Wasps v Leicester Tigers 32 | 25
SEVENS
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Pool 0
Team P W D L Pts
Spain Sevens 0 0 0 0 20
Pool 19
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England Sevens 0 0 0 0 19
Pool 20
Team P W D L Pts
Uganda Sevens 0 0 0 0 2
Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Fiji Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Canada Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Samoa Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Scotland Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool B
Team P W D L Pts
New Zealand Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Australia Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
France Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool C
Team P W D L Pts
Argentina Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
United States Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool D
Team P W D L Pts
South Africa Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Kenya Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Russia Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool
Team P W D L Pts
Wales Sevens