Boks smart

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December 1, 2016
Boks smart

NEW LEADER: Philip Snyman

SA Sevens not banking on experience.

The  Blitzbokke will field one of the most experienced sides when the World Series kicks off in Dubai this weekend.

But coach Neil Powell has warned his charges that experience alone won’t get them off to the desired start – of winning the first tournament of the series.

Instead, he wants them to hit the ground running. And it starts with their first match against minnows Uganda.

With the likes of Chris Dry, with 52 tournaments to his name, captain Philip Snyman (37), former skipper Kyle Brown (56) and Cecil Afrika (45) in his squad, Powell admits they have the knowledge to do well in the series starter.

Powell says: “[There is] no doubt, we will be one of the most experienced sides in Dubai.

“This group of players have won a couple of tournaments in the past, but as we realised at the end of the previous season in our final against Scotland, you cannot relax for one second.

“So experience only really counts when you combine that with faith in your structures and your best effort on the day.

“[I’m] happy that we have a consistent squad, happy about the experience.”

He then warns: “But we can also not be complacent about it.

“We can’t think we can pitch up and it will happen for us, we’ve got to make it happen.

“[Success is] not going to come easy, nobody is just going to give you success.

“We know that we have to be play to our abilities and make sure we are 100 percent ready every time we go out on the field and it starts with that first game against Uganda.”

Mindset

The Sevens team is starting afresh, despite the amount of experience in their squad, and Powell admits that they need to get their mindset right ahead of the series.

He adds: “It’s difficult to pick yourself up after a peak like the Olympics.

“But I think it’s all about our standards and what we want to achieve in the World Series.

“We need to get out of the blocks really well by doing well in Dubai firstly and then Cape Town.”

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