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The 3-day match, Thursday, 15 to Saturday, 17 December 2016 will be played at PPC Newlands.

The 1-day match, Sunday, 18 December 2016 will be played at Western Province Cricket Club.

TEAMS
WP SQUAD
Andrew Puttick
Pieter Malan
Stiaan Van Zyl
Zubayr Hamza
Sybrand Engelbrecht (Capt)
Matthew Kleinveldt
Kyle Verreynne (W/K)
Abdu Dayyaan Galiem
Mpilo Njoloza
Tshepo Moreki
Mthiwekhaya Nabe
Kholosa Koyana
Thokozani Peter

Coach: Faiek Davids
Fitness & Conditioning Coach: Dieter Swanepoel Continue reading

The Springbok coach and players reported back to SA Rugby on Tuesday as part of the review process following what had been a “profoundly disappointing season” in the view of union president, Mr Mark Alexander.

Coach Allister Coetzee and three senior players – retiring captain Adriaan Strauss, Pat Lambie and Tendai Mtawarira – provided their feedback on a year in which eight of 12 Tests were lost.

The report-back session was led by the Springbok Steering Committee, made up of Mr Francois Davids and Mr James Stoffberg, as members of the High Performance Committee, and Jurie Roux, SA Rugby CEO. The committee is part of the process for identifying and recommending national team appointments. Mr Alexander was also present.
The committee received feedback on technical, tactical, operational, logistical and personnel matters and what impact management and players believed they may have had on team performance.

The committee also questioned team personnel on the committee’s impressions of the season and particularly the Castle Lager Outgoing Tour performances.
Mr Alexander said: “We review the Springbok season with the national coach at the end of each year but this year’s process has been given extra attention because of profoundly disappointing results. Continue reading

The Springboks will welcome France to South Africa for the first time since 2010 when the two nations clash in three Tests next June.

It will also be the first series of three Tests against Les Bleus since 1967. The encounters are scheduled for Pretoria, Durban and Johannesburg as announced at the Cape Town Sevens over the weekend.

The opening Test will be at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria on Saturday, 10 June 2017 – France’s first visit to the home of the Blue Bulls since 1980. 

The next Saturday, 17 June, the two teams will clash at Growthpoint Kings Park in Durban, scene of the epic Rugby World Cup semi-final in 1995, when the Boks won 19-15. 

And the final match of the series will take place at Emirates Airline Park in Johannesburg on Saturday, 24 June. The last time France played in the City of Gold, they stung the Springboks with a 32-23 victory in 2001. 

That was one of six French away victories over the Springboks – the two teams have met in South Africa 21 times, with the Boks winning 10, while five Tests ended in draws.

June 2017 fixtures:

10 June: Springboks v France – Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria

17 June: Springboks v France – Growthpoint Kings Park, Durban

24 June: Springboks v France – Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg

* All kick-off times will be confirmed in due course.

The second instalment of the SA Rugby coaches’ indaba was held on Monday in Cape Town, where the Springbok coaching staff and the Vodacom Super Rugby head coaches continued with discussions to map a strategic blueprint for South African rugby.
Also in attendance were the SA Rugby Union President, Mark Alexander and Mr James Stoffberg, chairman of the SA Rugby High Performance Committee.

Monday’s assembly was a resumption of the ground-breaking coaches’ indaba held in Cape Town two months ago, with the main aim of designing a new direction for Springbok rugby and to address on-field performance by South African teams.
“As a result of the excellent collaboration between our coaches at the Indaba, we now have the guiding principles of a much needed blueprint for South African rugby,” said Mr Alexander.

“Since the pioneering first meeting took place in October, we have witnessed how our coaching, conditioning and medical experts all come together in a fantastic show of unity, to collaborate and plot ways to improve South African rugby.”
According to Coetzee, he had been excited by the Indaba and the willingness of all stakeholders to contribute towards improving the local game.

“The blueprint for SA Rugby is now at an advance stage and the decisions from today’s meeting will be incorporated in a document which we will finalise early next year. We discussed certain skills sets and fundamentals which will ensure players meet the required Springbok standards,” said Coetzee.

“We also looked at the 2017 international calendar with the aim to optimise preparation time of the Springboks and presented the outcomes of the conditioning workshop held last week.”
Other discussion topics included learnings from the 2016 season, player contracting, player retention and succession planning.
The next meeting will be held early next year, before the start of the 2017 Vodacom Super Rugby campaign.

The Springbok Sevens team on Sunday suffered a narrow 19-17 loss to England in the final of the HSBC Cape Town Sevens, but are still top of the log following the opening two tournaments in the 2016/17 HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series. The tournament resumes in late January when New Zealand hosts the third tournament of the series in Wellington.

England toppled the Springbok Sevens and secured a first-ever tournament win in South Africa by using their opportunities on attack better and putting pressure on the Blitzboks with their defence.

South Africa had to start the match without injured stars Seabelo Senatla and Kyle Brown and lacked the rhythm they had had earlier in the day.

Both sides scored three tries, but an additional successful conversion by England proved the difference.

Springbok Sevens coach, Neil Powell, said afterwards it would be harsh to judge the performance of his team on the result against England.

“We played well in Dubai and made the final in Cape Town, although we’re very disappointed that we could not win this for the wonderful local supporters, we have won 11 of our 12 matches in the last two weeks and that is something we are proud of and pleased about. We did not play well enough in the final though and England managed to close our space down.”

This was echoed by captain, Philip Snyman. Continue reading

The Springbok Sevens team advanced to the Cup quarter-finals of the HSBC Cape Town Sevens tournament in front of a packed Cape Town Stadium on Saturday after winning all three their pool matches.

The hosts and defending champions topped Pool A with wins over Russia (41-0), the USA (28-10) and Australia (29-7). They will face Wales in the first of four Cup quarter-finals on Sunday (kick-off at 12h04).

The South Africans had a strong day on attack, scoring 16 tries in their three matches, the most of all the teams. However, their defence was also tested, especially against Australia and the USA, but the Blitzboks put in some solid hits to keep their opponents at bay. They only conceded three tries, the least of any of the teams on the opening day.

Werner Kok finished the day as top South African try scorer with four touchdowns, while Seabelo Senatla and Philip Snyman scored three each. Springbok Sevens coach Neil Powell said that it was a difficult day, despite the good results.

“Teams are now looking at different ways to counter us and especially Australia played a very physical match against us,” said Powell. Continue reading

The Buildnat Cape Cobras squad for the T20 Challenge match vs Warriors in Port Elizabeth on Friday 9th December 2016.

Players
Kieron POLLARD (Captain)
Hashim AMLA
J P DUMINY
Rory KLEINVELDT
Richard LEVI
George LINDE
Aviwe MGIJIMA
Tshepo MOREKI
Justin ONTONG
Wayne PARNELL
Dane PATERSON
Nkululeko SERAME
Dane VILAS (W/Keeper)

Springbok Sevens coach Neil Powell on Thursday stuck with the tried and tested squad that won in Dubai last weekend for the second edition of the HSBC Cape Town Sevens tournament, to be played at the Cape Town Stadium this weekend.

The 12 players that were crowned champions of the Emirates Airlines Dubai Sevens last Saturday, will again start in Cape Town, with Siviwe Soyizwapi the reserve player that will replace any injured Blitzbok during the tournament for the second week in a row.

The South Africans are looking to defend the title they won in last year’s inaugural tournament, as well as a fourth consecutive title at home, after also winning the last two tournament hosted in Port Elizabeth in 2013 and 2014.

With a combined total of 375 tournament caps, the Blitzbok squad is the most experienced amongst the 16 contenders for the Cape Town title.

“We are fortunate to be able to again field an experienced squad,” Powell said.

“There were niggles from Dubai, but those were expected as the guys have not played for a couple of months. Luckily for us, we came back from Dubai without any serious injuries and lots of belief in our systems.”

Powell introduced some special measures this week to try and re-focus the team’s goals and mindset.

“We had to start from scratch again. The players are experienced enough to be able to do that themselves, so I hope the triggers we provided will be successful,” said Powell. Continue reading

Pic: worldrugby.corg

Pic: worldrugby.corg

Cape Town is abuzz with rugby action this week in the build-up to the highly-anticipated HSBC Cape Town Sevens. If you’re attending the event, make sure you know all the ins and outs of what will be happening on Saturday and Sunday. Attached to this email is a Cape Town Stadium map.

Is it really sold out?
Yes, all tickets for the event are sold out.

Where can I park?
The best place to park would be in the CBD (south of Buitengracht Street) and then to take a free shuttle to the Stadium from the Civic Centre or Thibault Square stations. There will be no public parking available at Cape Town Stadium and exiting from other parking facilities close to the venue will take a lot of time at the end of play on each day.

Are any roads closed?
· Granger Bay Blvd
· Vlei Road
· Fritz Sonnenberg Road

Can I use public transport to get there?
MyCiti Bus will be servicing free rides from the Civic Centre and Thibault Square Station to the Cape Town Stadium and back. Please present your match day ticket in order to access this free service.

The first bus will depart from the Civic Centre at 09h00 and the last bus departs from the Stadium at 21h15. Normal MyCiti services can however only be accessed with the MyConnect card, where standard fare applies.

What about the children?

Continue reading

Pic: ruggaworld.com

Pic: ruggaworld.com

SA Rugby Test referee Craig Joubert on Wednesday announced his retirement from 15-a-side refereeing to take up his “dream job”, developing elite young match officials.

Joubert, 39, has accepted a new position with World Rugby as a “Referee Talent Development Coach”, to help identify and develop the next crop of top men’s and women’s referees in both sevens and 15s. This full-time position, which was globally advertised, will involve coaching and mentoring referees on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series circuit, where Joubert will continue to officiate.

Joubert refereed his 68th and 69th Test matches during the November international window and will take up his new position immediately in the New Year.

“This was not a decision I took lightly given the obvious lure of possibly refereeing the British & Irish Lions in New Zealand next year as well as the Rugby World Cup in Japan in 2019,” said Joubert.

“However, the opportunity to make a difference in other peoples’ careers and lives is something which I’m excited about. It really is a dream job. Over the past few years I have taken Rasta Rasivhenge under my wing and have mentored and coached him and it has been enormously rewarding to see him grow as a person and as a referee.

“This position gives me the opportunity to play a more formal role in sharing my experiences and developing referees and to have a positive influence on the lives and careers of other young referees. Continue reading

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