NEWS ARTICLES
SA Rugby Sevens Academy beaten in Dubai final
December 03, 2017
The SA Rugby Sevens Academy made a fifth consecutive final appearance at the Emirates Airline Dubai Sevens International Invitational tournament on Saturday, but were beaten 17-5 by Esparanza 22 - an invitational side made up of players from New Zealand, England and Wales.

The South Africans scored three impressive wins on day one of the tournament on Friday and continued their winning ways on day two, with a 24-10 victory in their quarter-final against Ireland (who have already qualified for the Rugby World Cup Sevens in July next year) and a 45-0 win their semi-final against Froggies.

“That semi-final result probably cost us the final,” SA Rugby Sevens Academy manager Marius Schoeman said afterwards. “We played very well in that game and the margin of victory was well deserved, but we did not pitch up against Esparanza. Overall though, it a pleasing performance over the two days.”

Schoeman felt that a number of positives outcomes had been reached, saying. “The main aim of us competing here was to grow and develop the players in the Academy set-up. They will make mistakes and learn from that, so winning is not everything. The players are developing into the Sevens culture and some take longer than others to adapt.

“But I am pretty pleased that we laid a good foundation with this group,” Schoeman said.

“Some of these guys will be on the circuit soon, and we are also bringing in some new faces who just finished school.

“The squad will travel to South America early in January for two tournaments and that will be another learning curve for them.”

Although disappointed about losing the final, team captain, Siviwe Soyizwapi, felt the squad’s performance in general was solid.

“We are not making any excuses. We are a professional set-up back home and we worked hard for this, but the performance in the final was not what we trained for. The performances in some of the other matches were impressive though, and there was some reward for the work done back home. From a personal point of view, playing out here was very good.”

Soyizwapi, himself a former Academy recruit, urged the younger squad members to keep working hard.

“Management really give the guys the opportunity to show why they want to be Blitzboks and it is up to the players to show they want to make the step-up,” he said.

MATCH CENTRE
FIXTURES
     
RESULTS
     
Castle Lager Incoming Series
Saturday, June 09 2018
17:05 - South Africa vs England
Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg
Saturday, June 16 2018
17:05 - South Africa vs England
Toyota Stadium, Bloemfontein
Saturday, June 23 2018
17:05 - South Africa vs England
Newlands Rugby Stadium, Cape Town
The Castle Lager Rugby Championship
Saturday, August 18 2018
17:05 - South Africa vs Argentina
Growthpoint Kings Park, Durban
Saturday, August 25 2018
00:00 - Argentina vs South Africa
To be confirmed
Saturday, September 08 2018
12:05 - Australia vs South Africa
Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Saturday, September 15 2018
09:35 - New Zealand vs South Africa
Westpac Stadium, Wellington
Saturday, September 29 2018
17:05 - South Africa vs Australia
Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, PE
Saturday, October 06 2018
17:05 - South Africa vs New Zealand
Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria

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