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Two wins for Blitzboks on opening day of Las Vegas Sevens
- Updated: March 5, 2016
The Blitzboks beat Canada 33-7 and Wales 36-7 on the opening day of the Las Vegas Sevens on Saturday.
Their results mean that South Africa, New Zealand, Kenya and Australia have all secured their places in the last eight of the competition.
The sarugbymag.co.za website reports that leading Sevens Series try-scorer Seabelo Senatla dotted down twice against Canada and then netted a hat-trick against Wales to stretch his season total to 30.
Springbok wing Bryan Habana opened his Sevens Series tally with a typical clinical finish and his first touch of the ball, after he was sent on as a second half replacement against Canada. It was his first appearance in a Springbok Sevens jersey following his debut 12 years ago.
Returning Springbok Sevens skipper, Kyle Brown, said he was pleased with his side’s performance on match day one of the three-day tournament.
‘We showed a lot of energy and commitment out there and we really made our scoring opportunities count for us. Our defensive effort was good but there is still plenty of room for improvement,’ cautioned Brown, who made his return to the side after missing the previous two tournaments in Wellington and Sydney.
Senatla (two), Justin Geduld and Ruhan Nel all dotted down as the Springbok Sevens raced into a 26-0 half-time lead against Canada. Habana, holder of the Springbok record for the most Test tries, then displayed his finishing prowess to score his first Sevens Series try after pouncing on a Cecil Afrika kick. Phil Mack scored a consolation try for the Canadians.
Senatla (two) and Geduld were again the scorers as the South Africans recovered from seven points down to lead 17-7 at the break, after Ethan Davies had scored for Wales earlier on.
Senatla completed his hat-trick early in the second half and he was followed over the tryline by Geduld and Branco du Preez, who celebrated his first Sevens Series action since May last year with a well-taken try as the South Africans clinched a well-deserved 36-7 win over Wales.
The Blitzboks will play their third pool match against the USA at 12.30am on Sunday morning (SA time). The Cup quarter-finals will start at 03:31 with the semi-finals at 22:45.
The Cup final is at 01:55 on Monday.
Picture of Roscoe Speckman courtesy of Getty Images