Springbok Sevens enforcer Rachelle Geldenhuys will add grunt and experience to the SA Select Women’s Sevens squad for the Roma Sevens on 10 and 11 June at the Acqua Acetosa Stadium in Italy, along with exciting young players Megan Comley and Christelene Steinhobel.
SA Select Women’s Sevens coach Renfred Dazel on Wednesday confirmed a squad of 11 players for the tournament, rather than the traditional 12, which features the Kenya, Italy, Venezuela, Paris 7s and Le Spinose teams.
Veroeshka Grain, Zenay Jordaan (both nursing knee injuries), Libbie Janse van Rensburg (back injury), and Unathi Mali (writing exams), all of whom played in the invitational tournament in France last month, were not available for selection.
“We are facing a challenge with injuries at the moment and Unathi is writing exams, so we have been forced to name a squad of only 11 players,” said Dazel.“But despite this we are excited about the tournament and we believe this will be a good character test for the team.
“It is good to welcome back Rachelle, Megan and Christelene. Rachelle is a physical player and her experience will be valuable in Rome, while Megan and Christelene are young talented players, who have been making a name for themselves in the last few months.”
Dazel was excited about the prospect of facing a handful of international teams and said they had learned a few lessons from their defeats against France last month, and were determined to correct the errors made in Rome.
“Our defence, in particular, let us down against France in the invitational tournament in Paris and Marcoussis last month, and we have been working hard to improve that area of our game since returning to South Africa,” said Dazel.
“We also created chances on attack that we were unable to convert into points, so good decision-making and focus will important in Rome. That said, we know that we will face tough competition, so we have to be at the top of our game from the outset.”
The team will depart for the tournament on Tuesday, 7 June.
SA Select Women to play in the Roma Sevens:
Lorinda Brown (Captain)