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Springbok Sevens coach Neil Powell on Wednesday welcomed the draw of TEAM SOUTH AFRICA in Pool B of the Rugby Sevens event at the 2016 Olympic Games, to be played in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil later this year.

The pools for this exciting milestone event which will see Rugby Sevens returning to the Olympic arena again after 92 years, were announced for the 12-team men’s and women’s events at Rio 2016 on Tuesday.

The second-seeded South Africans were grouped with Australia, France and Spain and according to Powell, all pools will be tough.

“I am pleased with our pool, but the reality is that you will have to respect every opponent, play every game at your best and use your opportunities. There will be no easy games and there are no easy pool. Even Brazil, who are seeded 12th, will be a very tough nut to crack as they will be playing in front of their home crowd. We need to prepare well because the other pools are also very competitive,” cautioned Powell. Continue reading

Pic: enca.com

Pic: enca.com

Unfortunately, various media reports over the weekend, yesterday and today, have cast doubt over the manner in which Ajax Cape Town conducts its business with regards to the transfer of its players.

It would come as no surprise, that third parties, would have resorted to using the media as a tool to achieve their goals at the detriment of the various role players involved in this transfer, namely the Chairman of Orlando Pirates Dr Irvin Khoza and Ajax CEO Ari Efstathiou, the persons directly associated with the transfer of the two players.

It is normal practice that negotiations regarding the transfer of a player takes place between the buying and selling club prior to the player having been made aware of any possible transfer. When an agreement has been reached between the two clubs, the selling club will brief the player/agent of the status quo regarding the potential transfer. Once this has been done, the selling club will then give permission to the buying club to talk to the player to conclude personal terms and contract with the new club. The contract between the two clubs is always subject to the player having agreed terms with the new club (this was stated in both the Orlando Pirates and Ajax Cape Town press releases). Continue reading

Boland, Free State and the Valke on Tuesday continued their winning ways at the Learners with Special Education Needs (LSEN) Week at the Afrikaanse Hoër Seunskool (Affies) in Pretoria to remain the only unbeaten teams in the tournament.

Boland, who took top honours at the 2015 edition of the tournament, registered a morale-boosting 20-11 victory against Western Province in the final match of the day on Tuesday.

Boland trailed 8-7 at the break, but they produced a fine second half performance to defeat their Western Cape neighbours in what proved to be a rematch of last year’s final match.

The Valke, meanwhile, defeated the Golden Lions Extraordinary Education team 41-12, while the Free State scored seven tries to two by the Leopards for their 41-17 win.

The second day’s action proved to be good for hosts, the Blue Bulls, who bounced back from their 43-8 round-one defeat against Boland to beat Gauteng neighbours, the Golden Lions, 34-17. Continue reading

Please note a correction to the score between the Blue Bulls and Boland in the LSEN Week. Boland won 43-8. The day-two fixtures for the LSEN Week on Tuesday have also been included below the day-one scores.

The SA Rugby Youth Weeks kicked off on an exciting note on Monday with the Learners with Special Education Needs (LSEN) Week at Afrikaanse Hoër Seunskool (Affies) in Pretoria and the National Girls Under-16 Week at the HT Pelatona Projects Stadium in Welkom respectively.

The opening day at the LSEN Week featured a few close encounters, with Western Province defeating SWD 25-20, while KwaZulu-Natal pipped the Blue Bulls Extraordinary Education (EE) team 37-36 and the Golden Lions EE side edged the Eastern Cape 19-17. Continue reading

The SA Rugby Youth Weeks kicked off on an exciting note on Monday with the Learners with Special Education Needs (LSEN) Week at Afrikaanse Hoër Seunskool (Affies) in Pretoria and the National Girls Under-16 Week at the HT Pelatona Projects Stadium in Welkom respectively.

It was a good day for the hosts at both tournaments, with the Blue Bulls defeating the LSEN Week’s leading 2015 side, Boland, 43-8 at Affies, while the Griffons cruised to a 39-0 victory against the Pumas in the National Girls U16 Week.

The opening day at the LSEN Week featured a few close encounters, with Western Province defeating SWD 25-20, while KwaZulu-Natal pipped the Blue Bulls Extraordinary Education (EE) team 37-36 and the Golden Lions EE side edged the Eastern Cape 19-17. Continue reading

DHL Stormers Head Coach Robbie Fleck has named a 27-man squad for the upcoming two-match tour of Australia.

In the absence of co-captains Juan de Jongh (Springbok Sevens) and Frans Malherbe (neck injury), the DHL Stormers will be led by veteran loose forward Schalk Burger for their matches against the Melbourne Rebels and Western Force.

Malherbe’s injury, which will see him sidelined for two to three weeks, means that there is a call-up for young tighthead prop Wilco Louw who has been impressive for DHL Western Province in recent weeks.

Another player who will not be part of the squad is fullback Cheslin Kolbe who is also on national Sevens duty.

The other additions to the squad see fit-again lock Jean Kleyn, prop JP Smith and utility backs Jaco Taute and Scott van Breda all join the touring group for the first time this season. Continue reading

SA Rugby President Oregan Hoskins on Sunday thanked Junior Springbok coach Dawie Theron for his immense contribution to rugby in South Africa as a coach and player and wished him luck for the next chapter in his career in Japan.

Theron completed his six-year reign as the Junior Springbok coach on Saturday in the bronze playoff at the World Rugby Under-20 Championship in Manchester England, against Argentina, in which the team suffered a 49-19 defeat.

Under Theron’s guidance, the Junior Springboks won the Junior World title in 2012 and collected one silver and two bronze medals in the past six years.

As a player Theron earned 13 Test caps, while he played for the Griquas Rugby Union from 1996 to 2009, before working his way up to become a celebrated provincial coach at the Kimberley-based union.

He will join the Docomo Red Hurricanes in Japan on 19 July at their summer camp in Hokkaido, with his contract running until 31 March 2018.

“On behalf of SA Rugby I would like to thank Dawie for his immense contribution to South African rugby,” said Mr Hoskins. “Dawie has been a fine ambassador for South African rugby having established himself as a top class provincial player and later a Springbok, and then a fine coach.  Continue reading

Springbok fullback Willie le Roux was suspended for one week after pleading guilty to a charge of breaching Law 10.4 (i), during the test match between South Africa and Ireland in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.

Le Roux was cited by commissioner James Absaloms of Kenya for making contact with Ireland fullback Tiernan O’Halloran in the 11th minute of the match as they both leapt in the air for a high ball, causing the Irish player to somersault and land heavily on his upper body and head. Le Roux accepted the citing complaint.

Judicial Officer Terry Willis of Australia heard the case in Port Elizabeth on Sunday and found that the relevant entry point for the offence was at the lower end and accepted the submission made by Advocate Attie Heyns on behalf of Le Roux that a one-week suspension was appropriate.

Le Roux is suspended for the match between his province, The Sharks, and the Lions on Saturday, 2 July, after which he will be free to play.

Junior Springbok coach Dawie Theron on Saturday described his team’s 49-19 defeat against Argentina in the bronze playoff at the World Rugby Under-20 Championship in Manchester, England, as one of the most disappointing moments in his career.

The Junior Boks were outscored six tries to three by a physical and well-balanced Argentina side at the AJ Bell stadium despite an enterprising opening quarter, which saw them build up an encouraging 19-7 lead.

“This is one of the most disappointing moments of my career and certainly the biggest disappointment in my six years with the Junior Springboks,” Theron said after the match. “This young team has a lot of talent, but they need to complement that with the right decisions at the right time on the field.

“We started off well against Argentina, but one try against the run of play resulted in us losing belief. We didn’t stick to our structures and we made bad decisions, while Argentina stuck to what worked for them.

“Argentina dominated physically and England did the same in the semi-final, and we could not counter that. We certainly missed the international competition in our warm-up games coming into this tournament. Continue reading

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