CAPE TOWN – The uncapped Ronald Brown, who has just lately recovered from severe sickness, will be a part of a raft of experienced Springbok Sevens gamers once they journey to Madrid subsequent month for two tournaments to be hosted by the Spanish Rugby Union.
South Africa’s two most experienced gamers, Branco du Preez and Chris Dry, will make the three-week trip to Europe together with an experienced group of HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series stalwarts, with Brown being the one new cap.
Brown, a current product of the SA Rugby Sevens Academy set-up and a FNB Varsity Cup star for the University of Johannesburg, graduated with an schooling diploma in 2019.
It was the identical year he was recognized with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and following a variety of chemotherapy classes lasting a number of months, the sweeper has been cleared of the sickness and is match to resume his rugby career.
“Ronald’s story is remarkable and it’s great to finally see him graduate to the Blitzboks set-up,” mentioned Springbok Sevens coach, Neil Powell.
“The resilience he’s shown in fighting his illness, as well as his discipline and work-ethic, are the kind of characteristics we look for in players and I’m excited to see what Ronald can bring to the team.”
Also included within the squad are JC Pretorius and Selvyn Davids, who had been named within the World Series Dream Team for the shortened 2020 season, whereas Zain Davids and Muller du Plessis additionally returned from their stints on the Cell C Sharks, the place they had been a part of the Durbanites’ Carling Currie Cup and Super Rugby Unlocked squads.
Siviwe Soyizwapi will lead the workforce for the primary time since December 2019. The winger was injured prior to final year’s tournaments in Hamilton and Sydney after which missed out altogether because the season was minimize brief due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The two tournaments shall be performed on consecutive weekends – from 19-21 and 26-28 February – on the Campo UCM Central, Madrid and would be the first organized by World Rugby to put together groups that certified for the Tokyo Olympics in July.
The world physique in December introduced monetary grants to all Olympic members, which had been to be used in the direction of coaching camps, competitors assist, technical and sports activities science, medical programmes and high-performance preparation occasions.
This would be the first of those occasions and for Powell, it comes at simply the best time.
“We last played almost a year ago and we have been on the training field for almost six months now,” mentioned Powell.
“All the gamers are very eager to get going and for us as coaches, the 2 tournaments shall be an excellent alternative to see the place we’re with regards to health, tactical consciousness and squad depth.
“We have picked this squad for that purpose in mind, bearing in mind that some players, including Kurt-Lee Arendse, Stedman Gans and Angelo Davids, were still involved in the Carling Currie Cup and will have a rest period once that is completed.
“The rest of the group will stay behind in Stellenbosch and continue with their preparations. They will be in the mix when the next set of tournaments come around, Covid-depending.”
The travelling squad will endure Covid testing prior to departure to Spain, in adherence to match rules, and can once more be examined upon arrival in Europe, the place the tournaments shall be performed in a bio-bubble.
Springbok Sevens squad: Chris Dry, JC Pretorius, Zain Davids, Sako Makata, Christie Grobbelaar, Selvyn Davids, Branco du Preez, Justin Geduld, Ronald Brown, Muller du Plessis, Mfundo Ndhlovu, Siviwe Soyizwapi (captain). James Murphy and Darren Adonis are the non-travelling reserves.