The Blitzboks started their weekend at the National Stadium in Singapore in typically dominant style on Saturday when they crushed Canada and Kenya 31-5 and 26-5 respectively in their first two group matches.
However, that was where the good times ended for the reigning Singapore sevens champions as they failed to win another match all weekend. The Bok Sevens team eventually finished sixth place after losing 22-15 in the fifth-place playoff.
The capitulation began when the Blitzboks surprisingly lost their final group stage match, on Saturday, 12-7 to USA to end their incredible 36-match winning streak. The second-longest winning streak in Sevens Rugby history. New Zealand’s 48-match winning streak is safe for a while longer.
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“We always knew that we would lose somewhere along the road; it was going to happen sometime or another,” said Blitzboks coach Neil Powell.
“We also felt that it did not matter against who we conceded defeat, as long as it was not against ourselves, but a better team on the day. Sadly, we did lose against ourselves today.
“We never managed more than two phases on attack and when you concede so much possession as we did against a team that is so effective on the counterattack as the USA, you will be in trouble. We learnt that lesson today.”
The loss meant that the Blitzboks finished second in their group and met Fiji instead of Ireland on Sunday at the Cup quarterfinals stage.
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…. to be continued
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