SA Sevens boosted by Stick’s return

The return of Mzwandile Stick has given South Africa’s challenge at the Cathay Pacific / Credit Suisse Hong Kong Sevens a major boost.


The Springbok Sevens are currently joint leaders on the IRB Sevens World Series log with England and in Hong Kong the top-seeds will do battle in Pool A with France, Uruguay and Korea.


South Africa’s team were shattered after their poor performance at the Rugby World Cup Sevens in Dubai and are doubly grateful that they have an opportunity to put things right so soon, and on such a big stage.


The Sevens Boks stormed to success in the opening two IRB Sevens World Series tournaments in Dubai and George, Stick kicking them to glory in Dubai and then scoring the winning try in George on home soil, but he was missing from World Cup effort and only now returns to the line-up.


“Seeing them go down in the World Cup against Argentina was very painful for me,” confided the captain in an exclusive interview with IRB Sevens.


“I still felt part of the team and was disappointed like them but it was a lesson and we’re going to learn and hopefully in Hong Kong things will go well for us.


“After the good start we had in Dubai and George we knew that all the teams were going to come hard at us. We’re not going to have any easy games and we’re just going to dig deep now and work for our points and stay positive.


Having started out for coach Paul Treu in Hong Kong, Stick also feels an extra affinity to the 24-team tournament. “What a special tournament the Hong Kong Sevens is to play.


For me it was where I started playing IRB Sevens, I made my debut here so it’s always been a special ground for me.


“I think it’s the best Sevens tournament, it’s almost a tradition that when it comes to Hong Kong everyone looks forward to watching it.


“It’s double points and at the moment we’re on top with England on 60 points so we know that if you win this one you’ve got a real chance to win the whole season.”


Sapa Rugbyweek.com

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