The Springbok Women’s Sevens squad welcomed the news that South Africa will host yet another major international tournament next month.
The inaugural HSBC World Rugby Sevens Challenger Series for women heading to the Danie Craven Stadium in Stellenbosch in the Western Cape.
The Imbokodo will be among the 12 teams from all six of World Rugby’s regions, which will compete from March 28-29 for a coveted place as a core team on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series for next year.
Argentina, Belgium, China, Colombia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Mexico, Papua New Guinea, Poland and Scotland will play alongside South Africa’s finest.
And for Imbokodo coach Paul Delport, the timing is great for his squad – fresh from a first appearance in the HSBC Cape Town Sevens in December.
“This is great news for us and what a pleasure for SA Rugby to be able to host this event in Stellenbosch,” Delport said after the announcement on Tuesday.
“For South Africa to host this tournament is testament of what SA Rugby is doing for our women’s game and we are hoping to deliver a good performance in front of our home crowd.
“With the dates now finalised, we can start planning and preparing in all earnest and purpose.”
Delport said getting onto the world series has been their main goal. “We need to play at our very best to get back onto the world series, so we know what is at stake,” he said.
“It was heart-warming to have experienced the massive support for the team when we played in Cape Town last year and we hope [we] will have good support this time around as well.
“We knew what we went into at Cape Town Stadium for and what outcome we could expect, and the team did very well. We picked up some momentum and that will be great for us to take into this tournament,” Delport added.
The Imbokodo will play in a warm-up tournament in Hermanus near Cape Town later this month as they start their preparation in all earnest for the Stellenbosch showdown. – APO Group