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Blitzboks easily through to quarters in Las Vegas
- Updated: February 14, 2015
South Africa are through to the quarter-finals of the USA Sevens Series in Las Vegas, US and on track for the defence of the title they won here last year.
The Blitzboks scored two convincing pool wins on day one of the three-day tournament.
The current HSBC Sevens World Series leaders are aiming for a third consecutive win in Nevada.
During the early hours of Saturday morning (SA time), the Springbok Sevens defeated Portugal and Japan to lead their pool and clinch a spot in the knock-out stages.
Their final pool match kicks off at 10.40pm on Saturday against tournaments hosts, the United States, who continued their good form by also booking their quarter-final place thanks to wins over Portugal (19-0) and Japan (42-5).
New Zealand and Fiji are the other two teams who made it through to the quarter-finals.
The rest of the teams will fight it out for the remaining Cup knockout spots in the last round of pool matches on Saturday.
On the opening day at the Sam Boyd Stadium, South African flyer Seabelo Senatla scored three tries in two matches to stretch his tally for the season to 27 so far in just five tournaments.
South Africa finished third last week in Wellington but the Springbok Sevens were not pleased with their overall performance, especially their showing on day one. In Las Vegas they came out very determined and focused against Portugal and good interplay, coupled with neat finishing saw them clinch a deserved victory.
Senatla, Rayno Benjamin and Werner Kok were the try scorers. Benjamin’s try got the fans on their feet early, receiving a deft one-handed reverse pass from Kyle Brown before racing away to score. Portugal competed very well and South Africa had to work hard to create scoring opportunities.
The Springbok Sevens were in even better form against Japan, racing to a 28-0 lead at halftime before wrapping up an impressive performance to seal their place in the quarterfinals with a match to spare.
Picture of a flying Cecil Afrika in action, courtesy of Martin Seras Lima/World Rugby Sevens