New Challenges Accepted by Springbok Women’s Sevens in Perth

Springbok Women’s Sevens Head Coach Renfred Dazel says that the Bok Sevens team is well prepared, but the realities of being the least experienced team at the HSBC SVNS Perth tournament and having to play the host union on their national holiday, will make for a tough opening day for the South Africans. Photo: SA Rugby

The Springbok Women’s Sevens team prepared well and accordingly, but the realities of being the least experienced team at the HSBC SVNS Perth tournament and having to play the host union on their national holiday, will make for a tough opening day for the South Africans.

That is the view of head coach Renfred Dazel as his troops are gearing up to face Australia and Canada on Friday, and then Great Brittain on Saturday in their final Pool A fixture at HBF Park in what will be the first time for Perth hosting the HSBC SVNS.

The standalone tournament will be played over three days, another aspect of the tournament the South Africans will have to get used to, but for Dazel, it is all part of the challenges they want to turn into opportunities.

“Yes, a lot of new things for us, but we are ready for this and determined to improve on what happened in the opening two legs of the series.” 

Springbok Women’s Sevens Head Coach Renfred Dazel

“After a good start in Dubai, the realities of back-to-back tournaments and injuries to our experienced core of players caught up with us and we did not perform to expectations in Cape Town.

“This time around, we will be better, despite having to start the tournament against the series leaders, Australia, who will be boosted by the crowd on Australia Day.”

Nine players in the Australian squad and seven in Canada’s team have double figures in tournament starts, to the sole South African in Mathrin Simmers, hence the relief to Dazel to have Eloise Webb, Zintle Mpupha and even Shona-Leah Weston back, although the latter only played in three World Series tournaments, with the last coming in 2014.

Dazel said: “We were without our leadership group in Cape Town and that showed. This week, with these three players fit and ready, we will be a different team; in fact, we are close to the one that were 60 seconds away from beating New Zealand in Dubai.”

Webb missed the first two tournaments due to injury, Mpupha was concussed in Dubai and could not play in Cape Town, and Weston stepped away from rugby for several years before making a comeback.

“We are learning all the way and we use that as positive motivation. We wanted to be a core team, that is why we worked so hard to qualify and get here,” said Dazel.

“We are still playing for a top eight spot and making the quarter-finals, nothing has changed. The format works for us and gives us a chance in every game we play, with the opportunities to pick up bonus points, and we want to make the best of that.”

The Bok Women’s Sevens coach said their preparations back home in Stellenbosch went well and despite the tough draw, they are eager and ready: “We are part of an elite group and want to show that we belong here. We are prepared and ready to go, so I am expecting a determined effort from the squad.”

HSBC SVNS Perth Fixtures for South Africa (CAT times)

Friday 26 January

09h28: Australia
14h04: Canada

Saturday 27 January

05h32: Great Britain

Springbok Women’s Sevens squad for Perth (With HSBC SVNS Caps and Points)

Forwards

4 Zintle Mpupha (co-captain) – 6 tournaments; 40 points (8 tries)
14 Simamkele Namba – 3 tournaments; 5 points (1 try)
12 Liske Lategan – 5 tournaments; 10 points (2 tries)
20 Kyla de Vries – 2 tournaments; 0 points
13 Kemisetso Baloyi – 2 tournaments; 0 points
18 Shiniqwa Lamprecht – 2 tournaments; 0 points

Backs

10 Mathrin Simmers (co-captain) – 15 tournaments, 35 points (7 tries)
9 Nadine Roos – 7 tournaments; 122 points (18 tries, 16 conversions)
7 Eloise Webb – 4 tournaments; 7 points (1 try, 1 conversion)
5 Marlize de Bruin – 3 tournaments; 5 points (1 try)
3 Ayanda Malinga – 3 tournaments; 25 points (5 tries)
16 Maria Tshiremba – 2 tournaments; 15 points (3 tries)
21 Byrhandrè Dolf – 1 tournament; 0 points


Original Copy: SA Rugby Communications, with editing by gsport

Photo Caption: Springbok Women’s Sevens coach Renfred Dazel has welcomed back experienced campaigners Eloise Webb and Zintle Mpupha for the third tournament in the 2024 HSBC SVNS at HBF Park in Perth, Western Australia, starting on Friday, 26 January. Photo: SA Rugby

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