The match will kick off at 09h52 on Sunday morning and will be broadcasted by SuperSport.
The victory over Spain, one of the core teams in the 2022 HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, showed the progress made by the South African women, who on Friday lost out to series winners, Australia, and the third-placed USA. Earlier on Saturday, they suffered a 59-0 defeat to Fiji, bronze medallists at last year’s Olympic Games, in their final pool game.
Springbok Women's Sevens coach, Paul Delport, opted to start with all the players making their debuts in the Fiji clash though, and rested experienced players such as captain Sizo Solontsi, Nadine Roos and Eloise Webb, in anticipation of the afternoon game. Mathrin Simmers also sat out due to a troublesome knee.
The South Africans finally found their attacking groove against Spain with their backline creating space for the outside runners. Roos sliced through a gap to send Ayanda Malinga on a power run and the wing finished off 60m down field, touching down under the poles for Roos to convert.
Spain came back with a try of their own to level scores at the break, but the Springbok Women's Sevens had their tails up.
Roos raced all of 80m to give her side a 14-7 lead in the second half after slicing through an outside gap. Her contribution did not finish there, as she ran onto a Zintle Mpupha pass minutes later for her second try. She also kicked the conversion to push the lead to 21-7 with two minutes to play.
Spain attacked well in the end, but their second try was unconverted and despite another touchdown by the Europeans, the celebrations on the touch line had started already.
“The try just after halftime gave us that final push towards the line,” Roos said afterwards.
“We were also lucky to score under or near the poles every time and our conversions were successful. We then managed to force them out wide when they scored their second try and when that conversion missed, we realised that it could prove vital, as it did in the end.”
The Springbok Women’s Sevens team last secured a win in the World Series in 2017 when they beat Fiji and Roos said this victory means a lot to the team.
“We all knew the Fiji game would be tough, especially as coach started all seven debutants and rested some of the senior players,” said Roos.
“Much credit must go to those youngsters who then held their heads up when we played Spain and contributed towards the win. That showed a lot of character.”
Roos said hard work still awaits the squad if they want to regain core status in the future, but that this performance indicated it is possible: “We really believed we can win this one, coach Paul laid out a great plan and we managed to execute that. There were still errors in the performance, but lots and lots of smiles in the change room.”
Scorers – South Africa 21 (7), Spain 19 (7)
South Africa – Tries: Ayanda Malinga, Nadine Roos (2). Conversions: Roos (3).
Spain – Tries: Iera Echebarria, Lea Ducher, Eva Aguirre Diaz. Conversions: Ingrid Algar, Ducher.