With a new tournament format and the memory of injuries to key players fresh in their minds, the Blitzbokke scored a hard-fought 10-0 win over Wales on day one of the Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens tournament on Friday.
South Africa managed to kick off their campaign on a positive note thanks to tries from Boom Prinsloo and Cecil Afrika, with the first points of the match (Prinsloo’s try) coming right at the end of the first half.
Prinsloo scored the opening try with just 50 seconds left on the clock in the first half, after Wales refused to allow the South Africans any attacking space and were themselves unlucky not to score.
IRB Sevens Player of the Year, Cecil Afrika, doubled the lead early in the second half.
The two teams fought a tough, physical battle and South Africa coach, Paul Treu, will now look forward to more of the same in their remaining Pool B matches tomorrow against the USA and current HSBC Sevens World Series champions, New Zealand.
Click >>>> here <<<< for all the results from Day 1
According to Treu, Wales gave his side a few problems in the first half, but they were able to realign their defensive pattern after the break.
“This was our first competitive match since we played in Las Vegas, and we also managed a lot of injuries during our preparations for this tournament. So with that in mind, I am pleased that we came through this game without conceding any points against a very strong and physical Welsh team,” explained Treu.
South Africa play the USA early on Saturday (4.58am SA time) and then complete their pool schedule with a tough encounter against World Series leaders, New Zealand (1.08pm SA time).
The Tank on the run. Frankie Horne on the charge for South Africa against Wales on Day 1 in Hong Kong. SA won the match 10 – 0 Pic: IRB/Martin Seras Lima
” Looks at the scoreboard “
Here are some key stats from the match vs. Wales:
Effective tackles: SA 13 – 28 Wales
Missed tackles: SA 8 – 5 Wales
Balls given away: SA 7 – 10 Wales
Possession kicked away: SA (1 of 1) Wales (1 of 1)
Errors made: SA 2 – 3 Wales
Turn-overs lost: SA 2 – 0 Wales
Penalties conceded: SA 2 – 6 Wales
Set-piece ball won: SA 12 – 5 Wales
Rucks & turn-overs won: SA 12 – 7 Wales
Rucks per try: 6 (SA)
Completed passes: SA 36 – 33 Wales
Strike-rate (passes per try): 18 (SA)
Tries each visit to opp. 22: 2 of 5 (SA)
Tries each visit to opp. 22: 0 of 3 (Wales)
Final score: SA 10 – 0 Wales
Here are some images of the Bok fans on Day 1:
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