THE Springbok Sevens will get an early chance to make amends for Saturday’s last-minute loss in the Dubai Plate Final against Australia when the two Southern Hemisphere rivals clash again on Friday in the pool stage of the eagerly awaited Nelson Mandela Bay South Africa Sevens in Port Elizabeth.
Hosts South Africa was drawn in Pool C with Australia, Canada and Kenya for round three of the HSBC Sevens World Series which takes place on 9-10 December in the new Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium.
The Springbok Sevens lost to Australia in the Dubai Plate decider after leading for almost the entire match, with Australia scoring the winning try after the siren has sounded to signal the end of the match. South Africa got the better of Australia on two occasions at the Gold Coast a fortnight ago and local supporters will be hoping that Cecil Afrika and his teams mates will quickly bounce back to form.
South Africa arrived yesterday at the Port Elizabeth Airport to participate in their home tournament.
As Dubai champions, England top pool A in South Africa and face a tough trio of matches against Dubai Cup semifinalists Argentina, Bowl runners-up USA and Shield winners Samoa.
France reached a first World Series Cup final since 2005 in Dubai. As Cup runners-up, they top Pool B in Port Elizabeth and will play pool matches on day one against reigning World Series and SA Sevens champions New Zealand, Dubai Bowl winners Scotland and African qualifiers Morocco.
Fiji head Pool D and will play Wales, Portugal and the remaining African side in the draw, Zimbabwe.
Following their win in Dubai, England climbed to second in the HSBC Sevens World Series standings, seven points behind Gold Coast champions Fiji.
The World Series Standings after round 2:
Fiji 39 points; 2. England 32; 3. South Africa, New Zealand, France 29; 6. Australia 28; 7. Argentina, Wales 23.
The pool draw for the Nelson Mandela Bay South Africa Sevens is:
England, Argentina, USA, Samoa
France, New Zealand, Scotland, Morocco
South Africa, Australia, Canada, Kenya
Fiji, Wales, Portugal, Zimbabwe
The confirmed training venues for the 16 teams are:
Argentina – Cille High School, Uitenhage Road, Sydwell
Australia – Framesby High School, Cornelia Avenue, Framesby
Canada – Gelvandale Stadium, Gelvandale
England – Westering High School, Papenskuil Street, Westerling
Fiji – Nelson Mandela Bay University, North Campus, Summerstrand
France – Pearson High School, Jenvy Road, Summerstrand
Kenya – Newton Technical High School, 92 First Avenue, Newton Park
New Zealand – Nelson Mandela Bay University, North Campus, Summerstrand
Portugal – Zwide Stadium, Tonjeni Street, Kwazakhele
Morocco – Newton Technical High School, 92 First Avenue, Newton Park
Samoa – Londt Park Sports Club, Ralston Road, Fernglen
Scotland – PE College, Kemsley Park, Mount Croix
South Africa – Victoria Park High School, Victoria Park Drive, Walmer
United States – Kemsley Park, Mount Croix
Wales – DF Malherbe High School, Walmer B-field
Zimbabwe – Nelson Mandela Bay University, Missionvale Campus.-Sarugby.net