Band of brothers

Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam,Nadawa | Friday, May 26, 2017
WHILE I congratulate the Blitzbokke for winning the 2016-17 WRSS, I thank our boys and team management for their efforts despite surrendering our title to a power-packed team which has settled for silver medal for four consecutive years.
HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series 2016/17 winners and Paris 7s final's runner-up, South Africa 7s team. Picture: HSBC
HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series 2016/17 winners and Paris 7s final's runner-up, South Africa 7s team. Picture: HSBC

After reading the article titled Band of brothers in The Sunday Times (21/05), I realised what the victory means to the Africans.

South Africa came close to winning the WRSS, but they had been beaten at the finish line first by the All Blacks and then twice (2014-15 and 2015-16) by our warriors coached by Ben Ryan.

South Africa also lost to Great Britain in the Rio Olympics semi-final. This ended their hopes of their first ever rugby 7s gold medal.

Blitzbokke coach Neil Powell reported in the article that the bronze medal was a tough one to take at the Olympics and that at the beginning of the series the team management and players had a meeting and everybody was focused and spoke about the desire to win the series.

The only thing on the minds of the players and team management was that there would be no more runner-up spots and that a 100 per cent effort had to be devoted both on and off the field.

Powell, while praising his players, said better people made better players and that the "band of brothers" played for each other and did not want to let each other down. He also heaped praises about their discipline and spirits.

Powell talked about the four-year cycle leading up to the 2020 Olympics. Smart planning Powell!

I was surprised to read that all the management team would be on the board until 2020 and that they were working hard on plans to take the team to the next level and grab the gold medal in Tokyo.

The Blitzbokke team is also in search for new talent and players. The Blitzbokke reached eight finals, setting a new record.

The year belonged to the Africans, no doubt, but Fiji has the potential to bounce back and devise strategies to achieve what the Blitzbokke achieved this season. Our boys have landed in Fiji and Baber has a huge mountain ahead of him. He needs everyone's support!

Home | Top