Blitzbokke’s Commonwealth dreams could take a hit

2014-07-01 00:00

JOHANNESBURG — The Springbok Sevens team’s hopes of winning a medal at the Commonwealth Sevens could well have been given a blow if indications that Springbok XV stars Bryan Habana and Schalk Brits may have to be forced to withdraw by their respective leagues, the supersport.com website reports.

While both Brits’s Saracens club and Habana’s Toulon club have given them the go-ahead to be selected for the Games, it seems that the Premiership and Top 14 may well order both to withdraw as the Games fall within the prescribed off period for European rugby.

As both leagues stipulate a strict four-week rest period for players during the off-season, it is unlikely they will change their minds and Blitsbokke coach Neil Powell may well be forced to look elsewhere to bolster his team.

The duo were named last month as part of Team South Africa’s list of competitors for the games as Powell named a dream team who included recent XVs star Cornal Hendricks, Lions captain Warren Whiteley and Western Province speedster Cheslin Kolbe.

Attempts to confirm the situation have been futile, with Sascoc CEO Tubby Reddy saying he has received no documentation to say either player had pulled out, while the South African Rugby ­Union have referred requests to Sascoc as the Sevens team fall under their umbrella for the Games.

South African Sevens squad

Chris Dry, Schalk Brits, Frankie Horne, Kyle Brown, Branco du Preez, Cheslin Kolbe, Justin Geduld, Cecil Afrika, Bryan Habana, Seabelo Senatla, Cornal Hendricks, Warren Whiteley.

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