The Springbok Women’s Sevens will enter the second day of the Brazil World Rugby Sevens Series on Sunday under pressure to deliver favourable results following a disappointing start to the series on Saturday in which they suffered defeats in all three pool matches. The team opened up the second leg of the World Sevens Series with a 31-5 defeat against England and then went down 26-5 against Canada and 40-0 against Russia in their final match of the day. England overpowered South Africa in their opening match as they dominated possession and territory, which allowed them to take full control of the match.
Such was England’s dominance they scored five tries to one by SA Women’s speeder Veroeshka Grain as they took advantage of gaps in the defence and space out wide to secure a convincing 31-5 victory. Canada started their clash with a bang and scored a try in the opening minute after finding space out wide, which earned them a 5-0 lead. They stretched this to 12-0 with their second try three minutes later after winning the ball from a turnover close to their own tryline and then scored their third try on the stroke of half-time.
This marked Ghislaine Laundry’s hat-trick and pushed Canada 19-0 ahead before the break. Springbok Women’s wing Phumeza Gadu scored the team’s first points two minutes into the second half as she sprinted outside the Canadian defence, which allowed them to reduce the gap to 19-5. They tried hard to build on this in the dying minutes, but a missed tackle resulted in Canada scoring their fourth try of the match to seal a 26-5 victory.
South Africa faced an equally tough task against a determined Russian outfit, and again battled to make their presence felt as the opposition shut them out on defence and made better use of their try-scoring opportunities. Russia led 21-0 at half time and they built on this in an impressive second half to finish the match with a late sixth try and a convincing 40-0 victory.
South Africa will face Fiji in the Bowl semi-final at 16:28 on Sunday.
SA Women’s day-one results:
England 31-5 SA
Canada 26 – 5 SA
Russia 40 – 0 SA
Photo credit: João Neto/Fotojump