Du Preez hits fifty in Vegas

Thu, 23 Feb 2017 07:50
Large branco du preez try 800

SEVENS SPOTLIGHT: Springbok Sevens backline player Branco du Preez will play in his 50th tournament when the World Rugby Sevens Series commences in Las Vegas in the USA on March 3.

Du Preez was named in the 13-man squad for the North American leg of the series, where they will contest the Las Vegas Sevens and the Vancouver Sevens in Canada on March 12/12.

The 26-year-old Du Preez made his Blitzbok debut in 2010 in Wellington and has since established himself as one of the core players in the team.

Du Preez has scored 89 points for the Blitzboks so far this season. He already kicked 37 conversions in the current series, which places him fourth on the list for 2016/17, but more impressive, 296 overall, the most by any South African player ever and 10th on the all-time list.

He has scored 963 career points – second to only Cecil Afrika (1167) in the history of the World Series for the Blitzboks – and could become only the second South Africa to reach 1000 career points on this trip.

Du Preez will also become only the fourth Blitzbok to get to 50 tournaments, following in the footsteps of Frankie Horne (68), Kyle Brown (58) and Chris Dry (56). He has played in 242 matches for the Blitzboks this far.

"It is a massive honour to make it to 50 tournaments," Du Preez said on Thursday, February 23.

"Last season I was battling a number of injuries. I only played in four tournaments all season and missed out on the squad for the Olympic Games and at times I was wondering if I will ever get to 50 tournaments.

"I am extremely humbled and honoured to make it this far and would like to thank everyone, family and management, who helped me get to this milestone,"

Du Preez has a very good record in the Nevada desert. He was part of all three squads to win the title at the Sam Boyd Stadium, claiming a winners’ medal in 2011, 2013 and 2014.

"We have a good record in Las Vegas and we must make use of the fact that we are fairly settled and have good momentum going into the tournament," Du Preez said.

Springbok Sevens coach, Neil Powell, praised Du Preez's determination in getting back into the squad.

"Branco had to work really hard to get back to the level required and he made it happen," said Powell.

"We are blessed to have a number of quality players in his position and the fact that he is in the starting spot shows how his hard work paid off. He is not the biggest player on circuit, but by far one of the bravest and adding his immense talent to that, it is no wonder he has been successful as a Blitzbok,"

At the Las Vegas Sevens, South Africa will face Canada on  Saturday, March 4 (02.43 GMT), France on Saturday, March 4 (05.42 GMT) and Wales on Sunday, March 5 (00.08 GMT) in Pool A of the tournament.

The Blitzboks have faced Canada 40 times, winning 35 of those with an average score of 27-9, while they won 45 of their 51 matches against France (average 24-9). They also have a solid record against Wales, winning 41 of their 42 clashes with an average score of 27-8.

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Wed, 31 May 2017
New Zealand U20 v Scotland U20 07h00 AIA Arena
England U20 v Samoa U20 07h00 Tbilisi
South Africa U20 v France U20 09h30 Tbilisi
Ireland U20 v Italy U20 09h30 AIA Arena
Argentina U20 v Georgia U20 12h00 Tbilisi
Australia U20 v Wales U20 14h30 Tbilisi
Fri, 02 June 2017
Blues v Reds 07h35 Auckland
Sat, 03 June 2017
Crusaders v Highlanders 02h35 Christchurch
Chiefs v Waratahs 05h05 Hamilton
NZ Barbarians v B&I Lions 07h35 Toll Stadium
Brumbies v Rebels 09h45 Canberra
Force v Hurricanes 11h35 Perth
Sun, 04 June 2017
Ireland U20 v Scotland U20 07h00 AIA Arena
Argentina U20 v France U20 07h00 Tbilisi
New Zealand U20 v Italy U20 09h30 AIA Arena
Australia U20 v Samoa U20 09h30 Tbilisi
South Africa U20 v Georgia U20 12h00 Tbilisi
England U20 v Wales U20 14h30 Tbilisi
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 28 May 2017
Lions v Kings 54 | 10
Sat, 27 May 2017
Jaguares v Brumbies 15 | 39
Munster v Scarlets 22 | 46
Sharks v Stormers 22 | 10
Wasps v Exeter Chiefs 20 | 23
Bulls v Hurricanes 20 | 34
Rebels v Crusaders 19 | 41
Highlanders v Waratahs 44 | 28
Sunwolves v Cheetahs 7 | 47
Fri, 26 May 2017
Reds v Force 26 | 40
Blues v Chiefs 16 | 16
Sun, 21 May 2017
Waratahs v Rebels 50 | 23
Sat, 20 May 2017
Kings v Brumbies 10 | 19
Munster v Ospreys 23 | 3
Wasps v Leicester Tigers 21 | 20
SEVENS
MORE LOGS
Pool 0
Team P W D L Pts
Spain Sevens 0 0 0 0 20
Korea Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Pool 00
Team P W D L Pts
Chile 0 0 0 1 10
Papua New Guinea 0 1 0 0 1
Pool 19
Team P W D L Pts
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
Scotland Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Canada Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Samoa 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
United States Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Argentina Sevens 0 0 0 0 0
Japan 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
Hong Kong