Blitzboks Blitz Back to Take Singapore Sevens


Fiji looked odds on to make it back-to-back cup wins on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, but South Africa scored 20 unanswered points to win 20-19 to gain their second win on this year’s circuit to go with their Vancouver triumph. It is only the second cup win for the Blitzboks in Asia. 

Player of the Final Angelo Davids helped lead the comeback against Fiji.

Tries by Aminiasi Tuimaba, Napolioni Bolaca, and Vilimoni Botitu gave the Fijians a 19-0 lead at halftime, but South Africa rallied back on tries by Kurt-Lee Arendse, Angelo Davids, and Ryan Oosthuizen and were down just a conversion. In the dying seconds, Fiji were called for offside and South Africa elected to kick towards the sticks. Selvyn Davids converted the penalty to give South Africa the cup and 14-point cushion for the fourth and final automatic qualifying spot for Tokyo 2020 ahead of England who took bronze in Singapore.

Despite losing to the USA in pool play, England got their revenge in the third place game over the Eagles, 28-7. The Eagles played the entire second half with six after Joe Schroeder was sent off for two yellows. The USA still lead the series standings, but now just by three points over Fiji, 145-142. A sixth place showing for New Zealand (this time to Samoa in the 5th place final) leave them 15 points adrift of the top. 

The USA can clinch automatic qualification at Twickenham on May 25-26 with a finish of 10th or better. They have not missed out on a top four space this circuit. Ninth place or better sees Fiji in place to defend their gold from Rio four years ago. New Zealand can qualify if they finish at worst one point behind England in London. South Africa gets in if they win at Twickenham and England finish out of the top four. 

At the other end of the table, Japan is now in the drop zone after Wales made the Challenge Cup semis while Japan finished joint-bottom with guests Hong Kong. Japan now trail the Welsh by three points in the race to avoid relegation from core status with two rounds to go. Kenya is far from safe themselves, just four points clear from Japan. 

France would win the Challenge Trophy with a 22-19 win over Scotland. 

All photos in this story credited to Mike Lee of KLC Fotos.

Singapore Sevens Men’s Dream Team:

Werner Kok (RSA)

Josua Vakurunabili (FIJ)

Meli Derenalagi (FIJ)

Aminiasi Tuimaba (FIJ)

Justin Geduld (RSA)

Max McFarland (SCO)

Vilimoni Botitu (FIJ)

Player of the Final:  Angelo Davids (RSA)


Pool A:  South Africa, Argentina, Canada, Japan

Pool B:  Fiji, Samoa, France, Kenya

Pool C:  England, New Zealand, Scotland, 16th team

Pool D:  USA, Australia, Wales, Spain


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