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Sevens rule the world with Games gold in Colombia
- Updated: August 3, 2013
By Mark Etheridge
in Cali, Colombia
Our sevens rugby side are on top of the world after winning gold at the 2013 World Games here on Friday.
With rugby sevens being an Olympic code at the 2016 Rio Games, the Blitzboks now have the honour of being the final World Games sevens gold medallists.
They downed South American rivals Argentine 33-24 in the final played in front of a raucous and passionate Pascual Guerrero Stadium.
That was after the two teams had been locked 12-12 at halftime.
SASCOC President Gideon Sam had told the teams that he likes nothing better than hearing the national anthem when sung in a foreign country.
And with the time difference between Cali and Johannesburg being seven hours, the inspired completion of the national anthem by the victorious squad on the podium, would surely have woken the President up in the wee hours.
Sevens is without doubt a team sport but no-one would doubt that Seabelo Senatla was SA’s stand-out star. He scored three tries in the semi-final and again, within 30 seconds he had put the Boks up.
There followed a setback when skipper Kyle Brown was yellow-carded for an alleged high tackle by the Chilean referee. The Argentinians bounced back to level before Senatla blitzed over from the halfway line.
Less than a minute before halftime it was the South Americans who roared back to make it all square.
The second half saw SA going behind, a rare occurrence at this World Games, before WJ Strydom pulled them back.
Five minutes from time it was the speedy Steven Hunt who made it 26-17 before another bizarre decision by the referee, saw him award a try in the corner to the Argentinians and then decided to rather award a penalty try under the posts.
That made it 26-24 and as the setting sun turned the evening clouds a brilliant pink, the cherry on the top for Team SA came as Mark Richards dashed over under the posts to seal a memorable 33-24 victory.