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Losing isn’t lekker – Blitzboks hope to turn their fortune’s around at Cape Town Sevens

Losing isn’t lekker - Blitzboks hope to turn their fortune’s around at Cape Town Sevens

Cape Town – Every coach worth his salt knows there comes a moment early on in his career that he needs to stamp his approval.

For Springbok Sevens coach Sandile Ngcobo, it arrived as early as just his second World Series tournament in Dubai.

Ngcobo’s debut series in Hong Kong was a disaster with the Blitzboks losing four out of five matches. Then his team relinquished their 19-game unbeaten record in Dubai, earned under former coach Neil Powell, in the opening game. How was Ngcobo going to respond? The 33-year-old hauled out the hair dryer after the 14-5 defeat to Great Britain. Fortunately for Ngcobo, it had the desired effect and the Blitzboks responded by winning their fourth consecutive series title at the Sevens Stadium.

“It’s not lekker to lose. We take it personally. We are proud to represent our country. It’s a massive honour. Losing is not for us,” said Muller du Plessis on the team’s arrival in Cape Town for this weekend’s leg at Cape Town Stadium.

Back in town, back in demand for #Blitzboks. Great support from media houses! 🏆🏆@Mullerdup #BlitzIgnite@SouthernSunGrp @CapeTown7s pic.twitter.com/97u0Auyrdh

— Springbok Sevens (@Blitzboks) December 5, 2022

“The harsh words were needed.

That’s what we needed to hear. I am just happy that the guys took it personally and we stuck together.

“If we’re not playing to the best of our abilities, that’s not what we want; we want to inspire hope, and people, and show people that we can be the best in the world.”

After Powell’s departure and the rocky start to a new era under Ngcobo, Du Plessis admitted the victory in Dubai had certainly eased the pressure on the team.

“It is an emotional ride for us. We know what the system can do and I think every guy gave all the effort he could to get the result. It was really emotional … and for us to pull it together, playing for something much bigger than us, is a good build-up for Cape Town.

If you're in Cape Town on Wednesday, come say hi 👋#CapeTown7s #FeelTheVibes #BlitzIgnite #RiseUp pic.twitter.com/FCqv9c9zxC

— Springbok Sevens (@Blitzboks) December 5, 2022

“We are finding our feet … Not much has changed, the system and the culture is the same, but there is definitely a lot of new energy and that is exciting.”

Cape Town has not been a happy hunting ground for the Blitzboks since they won the inaugural event at the venue five years ago.

Equally, the Blitzboks bombed out of the Rugby World Cup Sevens on home soil three months ago when the emotions of sending Powell off on a positive note became too much to bear.

Muller is hoping they can redeem themselves this weekend in the Mother City.


Original Article