Blitzboks stunned by England in final

Cecil Afrika (left) and Werner Kok (Gallo).
Cecil Afrika (left) and Werner Kok (Gallo).

Cape Town - The Blitzboks were stunned at Cape Town Stadium on Sunday when they went down 19-17 to England in the final of the Cape Town Sevens. 

It was a finish of epic proportions, but in the end the South Africans fell just short in their bid to win four home tournaments in a row. 

The crowd had played its part all day, turning up for the Blitzboks in every match and the roar that greeted the sides as they made their way onto the field for the final was deafening. 

The Blitzboks went into the final without two key players as Seabelo Senatla (calf) and Kyle Brown (knee) missed out through injury. 

Despite that, South Africa were full of energy. 

Werner Kok should have scored the opening try of the match, but his hands let him down as Cape Town Stadium gasped in disbelief. 

The Blitzboks would have their try soon after, though, as Chris Dry finished off the move to put the hosts ahead. 

The conversion from Branco du Preez was no good, though. 

Then came two England tries that knocked the wind out of the Blitzboks. 

The first was through Richard de Carpentier and the second through Dan Norton. 

At half time, the hosts were 12-5 down and it would take a spirited effort in the second period to pull off the win. 

They got exactly the start they needed soon after the restart when Rosko Specman kicked ahead, gathered and scored under the posts to level matters at 12-12.

A sustained period of England attack came after that, and despite resilient South African defence the visitors would get their reward in the fourth minute of the second half through Ruaridh McConnochie. 

In a dramatic finish, Kok then scored in the corner on the final hooter to make it 19-17 to England with just a conversion from the left touchline to come. 

Justin Geduld was the man tasked with the massive responsibility, but his kick was wide as Cape Town Stadium was stunned and the party came to an end. 

Earlier the Blitzboks had beaten New Zealand 14-7 in a tight battle in the semi-finals to advance to the tournament final. 

Before that, they were clinical as they cruised into the semi-finals with a 33-0 win over Wales.



Tries: Chris Dry, Rosko Specman, Werner Kok

Conversion: Cecil Afrika


Tries: Richard de Carpentier, Dan Norton, Werner Kok

Conversion: Tom Mitchell (2)

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