Springboks place second in pool to retain cup hopes

2011-02-04 10:58

The Springbok Sevens squad will face Australia in the Cup quarter-finals on Saturday after finishing second in Pool D at the Wellington Sevens in New Zealand today.

The Boks thumped Canada in their first match, lost narrowly to France in their second and drew against Fiji, who topped the standings, in their third and final pool game.

Needing a draw against Fiji to ensure their place in the top-flight on day two, the South Africans lost the early advantage when the powerful Sermaia Burotu found space out wide.

Although the Boks had several opportunities to equalise in the first half, they made too many unforced errors, with poor handling at the core of their frustrations.

In a tense second half, Paul Treu’s men did well to keep the big islanders out and were eventually rewarded when Braco du Preez stepped his way through the Fijian defence to score under the posts.

Du Preez also slotted the conversion to level the scores.

As the match drew to a close the Boks tried their best to take the lead and could have won the match had they decided to go for posts when they were awarded a penalty at the death.

Earlier, they had started their campaign on a high note by securing a 31-5 victory over Canada, but then suffered a shock defeat, going down 14-12 against France.

The last time the Boks lost to France in a Sevens World Series match was in 2005.

Scorers: Springboks 7 (0): Try – Branco Du Preez. Conversion – Du Preez
Fiji 7 (7): Try – Sermaia Burotu. Conversion – Ilai Tinai.

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