Round one of the 2017 – 2018 HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series is already over and it was none other than South Africa who reigned victorious by winning the first round in Dubai for a second year in a row. The Blitzbokke’s triumphant victory against New Zealand was the perfect way to kick off the renowned ten-round tour-nament, following their 24-12 win last weekend.
Round two of the tournament will be taking place at the iconic Cape Town Stadium where the Blizbokke are set to play in Pool A alongside France, Kenya and Russia this Saturday the 9th and Sunday the 10th of December. Tickets to this tremendously popular sporting event have been sold out for some time.
Along with the excitement of the games, another special event also took place on Friday the 8th of December at the Blitzbokke’s team hotel.
Prominent philanthropist Gavin Varejes, the President of SARLA (the South African Rugby Legends Association), and celebrated rugby icon Stefan Terblanche, CEO of SARLA, were selected to do the prestigious handover of the Springbok Seven’s jersey to the Blizbokke Team.
According to Gavin Varejes, President of SARLA, "Our Springbok Sevens team has achieved remarkable things, keeping the SA flag flying high and giving us so much to be proud of. The Blitzbokke are known in the world of rugby as the team to beat and set a benchmark for other teams to aspire towards. The fact that the Greenpoint Stadium was sold out quicker for our Blitzbokke than it was for Justin Bieber or U2 shows that South Africans are incredibly passionate about supporting our rugby he-roes and the power that sport has to unify our nation." He adds, "This is why it is such an honor and a privilege for me to be asked by Neil Powell to hand over the jerseys to this outstanding team of athletes."
Neil Powell, the current Springbok Seven’s coach who led the team to their first place finish last year, spoke proudly of the two fine gentlemen who participated in the jersey handover, “As our team culture and values are the most important thing in our system with our Mission Statement being; "Touching People's Lives", it's only fit to have these two gentleman be a part of our journey. On a personal note, through-out both Marius and my careers, out of all the people that we have met, Gavin is most probably the person who touches more people's lives than anyone else. Not even taking into account the hundreds of millions that he has invested in rugby, both locally and internationally, without expecting any recognition whatsoever. Take all of that away and we would still have much to say about the man who en-riches the lives of so many on multiple levels.
We can see why Gavin involved the legendary, yet humble World Rugby icon, Stef-an Terblanche, who shares the same values and passion for rugby. As a player who participated in more international and first class games than most, it's absolute-ly fantastic to see him give back to rugby; from grass roots to the retired but not for-gotten rugby legends.
You are both true legends and we are proud to be associated with you.”
With the Blitzbokke’s 2016 – 2017 tournament victory still fresh in supporter’s minds,
South Africa is on tenterhooks as they ready themselves to watch the weekend’s games.