BlitzBoks must improve 'ball-in-hand' game

Mon, 22 Jan 2018 16:22
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IN THE SEVENS SPOTLIGHT: Defending champions South Africa are looking to be even more dangerous on attack.

The 2016/17 World Series and Sydney champions, the BlitzBoks have been great on defence.

But assistant coach Renfred Dazel said attack is their focus this week - ahead of Round Three of the 2017/18 World Series in Sydney.

Dazel, who represented the BlitzBoks in 32 tournaments, is still feeling some nerves and excitement in the build-up to this weekend's tournament.
 
It will be the first time for Dazel in his new role as an assistant coach of the men's team.
 
"I have played and worked with [head coach] Neil Powell before, so this is not completely new to me," explained Dazel, who was the SA women's coach until the end of last year.
 
"I assisted him at the Olympic Games in 2016 [where South Africa won bronze] and during the Cape Town Sevens last December. We were also teammates for a couple of years. The women's team also shared the same base in Stellenbosch, so I really slotted in with ease."

He made it clear that attack was at a premium in Sydney this week.
 
"There is less pressure for the assistant coach, which allows me to focus on the task at hand - more personal and one-on-one coaching with the players. I am taking care of the attack and the one thing we picked up from our performance in Cape Town, was a need to improve with ball in hand.

"We have shifted some of the focus of our preparations towards that.
 
"I am excited and a bit nervous about the weekend, but that is a good sign," Dazel added.
 
Another experienced, but excited BlitzBok in the squad is veteran Kyle Brown, who will be playing in his 61st tournament, but first in Sydney. He missed the previous two tournaments in New South Wales due to injury, but Australia is not new to him as he has played in the Adelaide and Gold Coast tournaments before.
 
"I had a quiet stroll around the city this morning to check out some of the coffee shops," Brown said. He could be playing in his 300th match for South Africa this weekend, but Brown prefers not to focus on this achievement.
 
"Nothing was made of my 100th or 200th matches, so I don't quite know what to with that. I am just happy to be back with the squad," he said.
 
Stedman Gans, another debutant at the Sydney Sevens, is also keen to get the action underway. Gans made his BlitzBoks debut in Las Vegas last year and played in Vancouver, Hong Kong and Singapore before he joined the Junior Springboks in Georgia for the World Rugby Under-20 Championship.
 
Earlier this month, Gans was part of the SA Rugby Sevens Academy side that won tournaments in Uruguay and Chile and now he finds himself with the BlitzBoks in Australia.
 
"It is what the system is all about - the Academy is there to produce and deliver the next generation of BlitzBoks and this is what is happening now," said Gans.
 
"We gained some valuable game time in South America. Players learn and develop with time on the field. I am still learning and growing as a player and this tournament will be more about that. I recovered well after the trip from South America and thanks to the staff back home at our base in Stellenbosch, I am feeling fine and ready to play."
 
The Springbok Sevens team open the tournament with a Pool C clash against Papua New Guinea on Friday. They face Spain and England on Saturday.

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 27 April 2018
Hurricanes v Sunwolves 07h35 Wellington
Stormers v Rebels 13h00 Newlands
Leicester Tigers v Newcastle Falcons 18h45 Welford Road
Sat, 28 April 2018
Reds v Lions 05h05 Suncorp Stadium
Blues v Jaguares 07h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Crusaders 09h45 Canberra
Kings v Cheetahs 13h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Exeter Chiefs v Sale Sharks 14h00 Sandy Park
Worcester Warriors v Harlequins 14h00 Sixways
Gloucester v Bath 14h00 Kingsholm
Connacht v Leinster 14h05 Sportsground
Dragons v Scarlets 14h05 Rodney Parade
Bulls v Highlanders 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Treviso v Zebre 16h00 Stadio Monigo
Cardiff Blues v Ospreys 16h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Munster v Ulster 16h35 Thomond Park
Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 Myreside
Sun, 29 April 2018
London Irish v Saracens 14h00 Madejski Stadium
Wasps v Northampton Saints 14h00 Ricoh Arena
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 22 April 2018
Racing Metro v Munster 27 | 22
Brumbies v Jaguares 20 | 25
Sat, 21 April 2018
Ulster v Glasgow Warriors 36 | 15
Zebre v Ospreys 37 | 14
Sharks v Stormers 24 | 17
Leinster v Scarlets 38 | 16
Bulls v Rebels 28 | 10
Reds v Chiefs 12 | 36
Crusaders v Sunwolves 33 | 11
Fri, 20 April 2018
Waratahs v Lions 0 | 29
Blues v Highlanders 16 | 34
Sun, 15 April 2018
Saracens v Bath 41 | 6
London Irish v Exeter Chiefs 5 | 45
Sat, 14 April 2018
Leinster v Treviso 15 | 17
Kings v Cardiff Blues 12 | 45
SEVENS
MORE LOGS
Pool 0
Team P W D L Pts
Spain Sevens 0 0 0 0 20
Papua New Guinea 0 1 0 0 1
South Korea 0 0 0 0 0
Pool 00
Team P W D L Pts
Uruguay 0 0 0 1 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
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