Blitzies are not Boks

Zelím Nel

The Cape Town Sevens is a rare, feel-good story in an otherwise demoralising feed of South African rugby news.

It took 16 unsuccessful attempts to launch the SA leg of the World Rugby Sevens Series to work out that the country’s most popular tourist destination – the one that’s home to the iconic Table Mountain, which serves as the breath-taking backdrop to the city’s premier sports facility – is a better venue than, say, Port Elizabeth.

Better late than never, and the quality of the event is matched by the quality of our team. How good are the Blitzboks? Answer: the best! South Africa are the defending World Rugby Sevens Series champions and they kicked off this season with a Cup victory in Dubai last week. Hopefully they’ll go all the way on Sunday!

You’ve been waiting for the ‘but’, and here it comes… can we please get a little bit of perspective on the whole Sevens thing?

I mean, it’s great that South Africa is doing well and all, but the chasm between Sevens and Test rugby is too big to cross with the leap in logic that suggests the Springboks are just a few Neil Powell pep talks away from restoring their Test rugby reputation.

At the big rugby schools, some of the most entertaining games to watch on a Saturday morning are the ones involving the B and C teams.

While U16A matches are usually dominated by whichever team boasts the most players destined for the pro ranks, the lower-tier matches are contested by players who will probably never be paid to catch and pass.

A balanced contest plays out in the absence of a rumbling, 105kg eighthman or a winger that runs a sub-11, 100.

While a timid inside centre would be exposed playing for the As, he’s not much of a liability for the Cs where the opposing 12 is equally as nervous about damaging the cerebral cortex he’ll require to complete a post-graduate IT certification in a few years.

It makes for an entertaining spectacle and that feeds the parents’ post-match chinwag about the nefarious reasons their kids aren’t getting a look-in higher up.

Sevens is the pro equivalent of B- and C-team rugby.

The minnows, who don’t have the resources to be Test contenders, send their best players; the traditional powerhouse rugby nations send their leftovers and, presto, almost anyone can win on the day.

It’s a great concept that bridges the gap between the heavyweights and the flyweights to deliver rugby’s only truly credible, global contest.

This point seems to have evaded some SA Sevens fans who believe that the Springboks should just trace the Blitzboks’ homework to achieve the same results. Impossible.

Almost everything about Test rugby is different to Sevens, including conditioning as it relates to the shape, speed and intensity of the game, the quality of opponents, and the premium on a narrower scope of skills executed at a higher standard. And we haven’t even delved into media expectation, political and boardroom meddling, and the unprecedented player access Powell enjoys.

These differences explain why the Blitzboks aren’t mainstays in the upper echelons of the 15-man game.

It’s impossible not to grin in anticipation whenever Branco du Preez or Rosko Specman touch the ball, Cecil Afrika is a cunning playmaker and who doesn’t admire Kwagga Smith’s relentless competitiveness? But, aside from world-class sprinter Seabelo Senatla, none of South Africa’s Sevens stalwarts should have a shot at reaching the World Cup in Japan in 2019.

These Sevens standouts are probably on the Bok radar, and that’s because the incumbent Bok selectors have tried to sell the likes of Ross Cronje and Courtnall Skosan as legitimate Test options. Who would you rather have at scrumhalf: Cronje or Du Preez? And Specman is surely as good a wing prospect as Skosan?

Bok rugby is doomed if what we learn from these inept selections is that Sevens players are good enough for Test rugby. I’ll be backing our boys to deliver a few knockouts at Cape Town Stadium this week, but there’s no chance they could go 12 rounds with the real All Blacks.

- Zelim Nel

Let's chat

  • humblepie

    Zelim, your attempt to put an article together is seriously flawed.
    “Only leftovers are used at sevens” – you cannot be serious! I would argue the opposite is true. The bok with the most test caps, Beast, will not even be considered good enough to be called a sevens left over. Ditto for Lood and a few other Stampkarre.
    “None of the Sevens has a shot at Japan 2019”?? You clearly didnt see the 5 Super rugby games where Kwagga was man of the match.
    The only conclusion that I can make of your attempted article is that your paradigm of how rugby should be played is stuck in the Olivetti typewriter era. This prevents you (and others such as Toetie) to see the bigger picture. This is sad as we need to make a paradigm shift in RSA before we can regain our position at the top. Until then, the bleeding will continue.

    • Mike S

      Provincial contracts have always been more prized than a Blitzbok contract. Many of these players are provincially contracted as well. If the were first choice in their provinces, do you think they would be released to sevens? Does that not make them the “leftovers”? At the time that they were first released, they were indeed “leftovers”.

      Unfortunately 15’s require a few stampkarre. You can’t play Kyle Brown or Philip Snyman at prop. They won’t make a first choice provincial side at flank. Philip Snyman was a wing! That means that these guys only compete for backline spots. Which of them are clearly the best in any position in the backline?

    • Sharky

      You lost me at: “Sevens is the pro equivalent of B- and C-team rugby”. That simply isn’t true.

      Yes, you are right in saying that “almost everything about Test rugby is different to Sevens, including conditioning as it relates to the shape, speed and intensity of the game”, but the crux is probably that Sevens requires a “narrower scope of skills executed at a higher standard”. This means that some players who would excel in the 15-man game would be useless in Sevens and vice versa.

      In the same way NFL superstars like Tom Brady may suck at rugby and Fourie du Preez definitely wouldn’t make it in the NFL. Both games are territory-based, contact sports played with an oval ball, but the skills required from players are significantly different (with NFL demanding a “narrower [position-based] scope of skills executed at a higher standard”). Yes, the difference between Sevens and 15-man rugby are not as pronounced as those between 15-man rugby and NFL, but they are still significant enough to disprove you assertion that “Sevens is the pro equivalent of B- and C-team rugby”. If that were true you could argue that 15-man rugby is the D- and E-team equivalent of NFL (or vice versa). And we all know that that ain’t true!

  • Barry Smith

    Wow Zelim what a dis for the sevens code! In my view they are a proud code of their own flying the flag high and making us proud. The comparative that people make between the codes is that the sevens guys face the same issues that the 15’s code faces – player exodus, transformation etc, but they manage to take it in their stride and still achieve despite the set backs.

    • humblepie

      Absolutely right Barry! This is the crux of the matter. Zelim & co should rather write articles about how the 7s succeeded to become the Top team globally whilst they experience the same challenges as the 15 man code such as affirmative action, players lost to Europe etc.
      From where I sit, Toetie and his staff looks like a bunch of cry babies. They should swallow their pride and learn from the 7s

  • Hanrick

    Brilliant article! I have said this for years. Sevens are played by guys who can’t make it in rugby. I’m a massive rugby fan, but I hate sevens. It’s a stupid sport and it’s definitely not rugby.

    • Mario

      So then why did players Joost and Habana do so well in 15 man code. Their origins are in 7 s. Look up the records and you will find many more excellent test players who also did well on the 7 s circuit.

      • Mike S

        The first world seven series took place in 1999. Joost played his first test in 1993. Yes, maybe he played in a tournament or two, but it did not shape his career or form his playing style. Habana played the series (all of four tournaments) in the 2003/2004 season. He scored a mammoth 15 points (3 tries). Did those four tournaments shape his career? It was probably great fun and he was able to show of his speed (10.4 sec 100m). It neither shaped, nor defined his career.

  • Siya

    Absolutely obnoxious, you need to re-think your take on Sevens. Did you not see Kwagga vs NZ? Did you not see Werner, Speckmagic, Senatla etc in Super Rugby and Currie cup? Please check the amount of players who have attempted 7s and struggled. One on one 15s players would get dominated by 7s players. You have no respect for the 7s format built with everything a 15s player would need. Gelant, SBW, Rieko Ioane to name a few have played 7s. Your point is irrelevant. Administration in the 15s set up seems suspect compared to the 7s group. Please re-think your flawed article.

    • Mike S

      Two years ago the man of the series for the Barbarians in a tour they undertook was Deon Fourie. He was brilliant. Won turnover after turnover. That does not make him a Springbok. Senatla and Kwagga played Super Rugby. Senatla did not often make the starting 15. The etc. did not play Super Rugby, they were busy winning the world series. However, are you comparing the Currie Cup to international rugby?

      Nobody said they can’t play rugby, they are just not Springboks. SBW played league as well. However, he did not make the sevens Olimpic team either did he? Gelant lasted a couple of matches, never started, probably because of a discipline issue? Ioane moved UP to 15’s in half a season. Btw he was 19. Our guys are 28 to 30 year olds who have been playing sevens for years, some as long as six to seven. Would DJ forbes make the All Black side as a what?

    • humblepie

      Yes their administration and especially leadership is suspect.

    • Johan

      Zelim doesn’t like Kwagga, didn’t you see his article about Kwagga when he was named Man-of-the-match against NZ for the barbarians in a losing cause?

      Zelim likes Big Fatties that run straight at the defence and has no skill to pass.

      It logically follows that a game played by skilled, fast, slightly smaller players are no good!

      And he’ll have forgotten that Habana, couldn’t make it at 7s “involving the B and C teams” and he couldn’t make the Olympic team…

      Habana (who has the most tries ever for a Bok) must logically then be a D or E team player…

      • Mike S

        Habana has been marking time to his retirement since 2011. And he was always more about speed than skill. You expected him to become a perfect sevens player in half a season at age 33?

        Nobody says the game of sevens is no good, just that the Blitzboks will have a tough time to make the Springbok side.

        • Johan

          Habana was 28 in 2011, and, according to your logic, “been marking time to his retirement” for 6 years now…

          Well, yes, if “Sevens is the pro equivalent of B- and C-team rugby.” then an A team player should easily make the team without too much difficulty.

          Habana started training for the team November 4, 2015 (only a few months after finishing 3rd in 15s WC) and the Olympic team was announced JULY 14, 2016, I have the links, if you wish.

          So, an A-team player, training for 8 months couldn’t make the B- and C-team

          Kwagga’s sevens game isn’t what made people think about him being called up to the Springbok squad, it was his performances for the Lions and the Barbarians (against NZ) that got people noticing…

          Do you see the problem with this article?

  • Werner

    This must be the worst article on rugby I have ever come across. Zelim I want you to really sit and think of what you just wrote.

  • The Blunt Bodkin

    You do know that a lot of our Springbok Legendary players have all played Sevens at one point to up their skill and vision right?
    Poor article man, sorry.

    • Mike S

      List the legends who made a living from playing the sevens world series.

  • Graham

    No Shhhh that sevens is different than 15’s. But that does not mean that you cant learn some things from sevens and take it to 15’s. I would really love if Niel Powell is asked to assist as a consultant for the boks especially with skills and handling. Our blitzboks skill levels are outstanding and way above any other team on the circuit.

  • Wesley

    Does Zelim get paid for this rubbish? NO SHHHH dude! Sevens is like a sport on its own, but calling it a B class to real rugby or some other crap is plain idiotic… Zelim is just writing this to get a rile out the 7s fans on the site. He’s like the “fake news journo” of AOR…

  • Matt C

    What is the actual point of this article? To highlight the fact that our sevens boy’s success does not warrant them a call up to the Springboks? I’m sure you’re qualified enough to know that the inverse is not always true either. Not exactly a profound insight.

    All you have done is have a completely unwarranted dig at the BlitzBoks at a time when they are by FAR the most professional, well coached and entertaining rugby discipline we have. (I’m still trying to figure out why.)

    The only thing I’ve learnt from this article is that you are a monumental idiot.

    • Zelim Nel Zelim Nel

      Thanks for the feedback Matt, as you can see from the overwhelming consensus of the replies, what you and I see as “not exactly a profound insight” has come as a great shock to many.

      • Matt C

        I’m not sure if we’re reading the same replies, but to me the consensus seems to be that it’s bleeding obvious that 7s and 15s are two very different disciplines and the two shouldn’t be compared. Bar the exception of Kwagga, Senatla and potentially Kok, none would sniff the Boks. I don’t think anyone is debating that.

        There was no need to refer to the Blitzboks as failed 15s players and that is where I think many are taking exception to your article. Their achievements are immense and should be celebrated as such.

        You must have surely anticipated this backlash before publishing, or was that perhaps the point? (Shameful if so)

  • Arch Rautenbach

    Worst article on rugby I have ever read. The two can’t be compared to each other. There are 15’s players that will never make it at 7’s but the opposite isn’t exactly true. Kwagga was a thorn in New Zealand’s side playing for the barbarians. Agaba was a revelation for the Bulls in the Currie Cup. Sanatla did well for WP and Africa was good for the Cheetahs. And these players, and even Niel Powell says that playing 15’s have upped their skills in specific areas where they didn’t even know they needed it. In 15’s you need your big men, in 7’s these big men will get lost. How many out and out 15’s players have tried their hand at playing 7’s and failed completely. Habana and SBW are some big names that spring to mind. Rhule had a crack only to ne dropped for his weak defense, where in 15’s he still make teams because there are other players to cover his weakness. In 7’s, there’s no place for weakness. Miss a tackle and the opposition scores. To slow to cover a certain distance in time, the opposition scores. In 15’s other players might cover for your mistake. Not so in 7’s.

    • Mike S

      That is the beauty of rugby, especially 15’s. There is room for all shapes and sizes, but unfortunately at international or Super Rugby level, not for little guys. And Agaba was fair for the Bulls, but not a revelation. I was surprised that he did not embarrass, but that is as far as the revelation extends. They are all good rugby players, but they are no better than any other provincial players they played with. Springbok 15’s? No.

      Very good at sevens though.

  • humblepie

    Arch, the interesting trend is that 15s gradually migrate to the way 7s play. NZ was the first to notice this and adapted. We are so stuck in our Stampkar mindset that it will take years to become competative at Springbok level again. Fortunately, a few Super rugby teams such as the Lions have also adapted. Watch the Bulls next year under Mitchell. Same team, diferent coach and mindset. Vastly different outcome.

  • Peter

    Zelim Nel is an uneducated retrobate pen pusher who is like Sport24’s Mostert…clueless….totally clueless as to what is happening in the real world of rugby

  • FDL

    Zelim – I have one question and one statement for you?
    1 – Why were the tickets for the Cape Town 7s tournament sold out so quickly? Cant remember the exact timing but it must be extremely dull to watch!
    2 – Somewhere some village is missing its idiot – please go back there!

  • Peter

    Can AllOutRugby please refrain from publishing Zelim Nel’s backward retarded articles….he is a disgrace to the journalistic profession and his prehistoric views are an affront to rugby

    • Mike S

      I am not sure, but I think Zelim is sort of in management.

  • Amien Davids

    Jonah lomu, Reiko ione. Must be c-team players seeing as they played 7s first. Zelim was a couple team player who wasn’t even chosen for the bench.

    • Mike S

      Lomu played 7’s after he had made a name for himself in 15’s. Ioane spent half a season there, before he moved UP to 15’s.

      • Amien Davids

        Mike I think you should read up on history. Lomu was drafted as a 8th man at high-school. After 7s they converted him to a wing in 15s. Reiko made name in 7s first before the blues signed him up as a wing. How long have u been following rugby junior?

        • Mike S

          Don’t try me. I guarantee you that I know more than you.

        • Mike S

          Lomu was 19 when he first payed for the All Blacks. 19 years and 45 days. He played one sevens tournament. Hong Kong. In 1995 there was no series. Hell Campese played the Hong Kong sevens. Does that make him a sevens specialist. By the way Lomu is a really bad example at 1.95 m and 120 kg. Ioane was 19. He did not make a name in sevens. He did not even play a full season. Are you saying that he made the all Black side a year later because he learned it all in sevens? NZ often use young players in sevens. In fact they often move from the Juniors, when they are not quite ready for provincial yet, to sevens. The ones that don’t progress remain for years. The good ones move on after one season.

          How does the NZ history lesson qualify any of the Blitzboks for the Springbok side? Is that not the question?

  • Manny

    “Sevens is the pro equivalent of B- and C-team rugby.” More like this article is the pro equivalent of B- and C- team rugby… maybe even E- of F-… It’s our inabiltiy to take our 7s players to the next level that is the problem. And the kak attitude like this that the players don’t have the skills that are needed to be successful at test level. Just look at what Tietjens achieved. How many All Blacks cut their teeth at 7s level under him? 30 to 40 odd? Including some of the greats like Cullen and Lomu. Such a disappointing article from someone who normally speaks a lot of sense

  • Mike S

    Sevens is great to watch, but it is sevens. The skill set is very different. Kwagga is the only player in the current bunch that may make it in 15’s. He is rather small, though. He does make up for it with his pace, but you can get away with that below international level. Problem is, at international level, more opponents are bigger and in general they are more skillful and faster than his provincial opponents. Speed alone won’t compensate. As for the rest… Senatla still has to impress in Currie Cup. Leyds has proven more successful and skillful in the same team and thus is preferred. The rest will not make any Super Rugby side on a regular basis, except maybe the Sunwolves.

    What makes Werner Kok a better wing than Kobus van Wyk or Sbu Nkosi or any other provincial wing. He has tremendous heart and I love his tenacity, but a Springbok wing? No. I wish I could clone his personality though.

    The Blitzboks are great at sevens though. Terrific in fact. Or in Trump speak; tremendous.

    I agree with Zelim. It was about time you bunch of ignorant “experts” were pointed in the right direction. Really.

    • Wesley

      Haha wow Mike. If your outlook is shared by many then no wonder SA rugby in shambles. You are obsessed with size, and cant see talent. Many rugby union around the world have adapted beyond, you are stuck with your backward outlook. Goodluck being left behind in this world….

      • Mike S

        By the way Wesley, which of the Blitzboks have proven themselves at 15’s? which of them should be in the Springbok side today? And if the Australians, All Blacks, English, Irish, Welsh, French and Scots have adapted beyond (beyond what?), why do they keep picking backline players who are bigger than ours? In fact, with a few exceptions, the first choice backline players in these teams are bigger than Kwagga.

      • Mike S

        Talent is there, yes. Enough to offset the size deficit. No. They are not international 15’s rugby players. How did our 85 kg wings fare in the Springbok side this year? Senatla weights about 75 kg. How did the brick and a half high flyhalf with the real lack of pace do? How did the 106 kg tighthead prop do against the 120 kg looseheads? Dreyer over extended every time to make up for the weight deficit. How long did the rake of a captain last before he was injured. How long did the slightly small and very physical Jaco Kriel last.

        Compare these very talented little guys with the Irish debut left wing. He was 1.95m tall and blisteringly quick. How will Senatla, Kock, or Specman stop him. How will they stop Ioane. He can match the for pace and skill, but he weighs more than 100 kg. Beauden Barret was probably the fastest rugby player in the world until Ioane arrived. He will outrun Senatla. He weighs 102 kg.

        Sorry Wesley our sevens players are the best in the world at sevens and they do well despite their size. However, they play against the leftovers from New Zealand, Australia, England and Scotland and they sometimes lose. None of the sevens players from those countries are even remotely in contention for their national 15’s sides.

        Unfortunately, a good big one will always beat a good little one. In international 15’s size matters.

        • Wesley

          Haha ok my friend. Agree to disagree. No point arguing with your narrow view then…

        • Wesley

          Very few sevens players were ever given a chance for a 15s national chance in SA. Even when they show they are worth it – ala Kwagga. Some even ignored, lost to Bok rugby completely – ala Kolbe. And those who have got the shot have done well or became legends – ala Habana, or looking like great future talent – ala Gelant. But what does any of what you talking about other players like Dreyer have to do with 7s rugby? I’m not even going to go into it with you about Kriel and Whiteley and their injuries and your idiotic argument on Barrett. You make no sense. No coherent argument. In your head it all sounds good though. You seriously know nothing. You and Zelim will do well together, talking out your arses.

          • Mike S

            Name calling again. Kolbe – too small, swatted away in defence by a NZ wing in super rugby. Habana played a season as a 20 year old (in those days it amounted to four tournaments), in which he scored 3 tries. Did that make him a springbok. No, the fact that he ran the 100 in 10.4 sec did. Kwagga has played one season in Super rugby and he was not first choice while Kriel was available. He did well as a very fast late replacement. Gelant did not “move up from sevens”. He played two world u/20 tournaments in between his sevens appearances and played for the Blue Bulls u/21 side. How does that make him a sevens specialist. He did not even start many games in the tournament.

            The only player all who could possibly make international colours in both 7’s and 15’s, among players who have played sevens for more than one season, is Kwagga. It hardly makes sevens a breeding ground for Springboks.

            The Blitzbokke are brilliant at what they do, but they do it in sevens. Sevens has zero influence on a player’s eligibility for the Springbok side. He can move up once he had proven himself in Super rugby.

            I know one thing. In international rugby (the 15’s version) size matters. Dreyer, Whiteley and Kriel are too small. They will not last, even if they are very good provincial players. The entire Blitzbok team is too small, even though they are very good sevens players. All these past sevens players who are now lost, were too small. Ioane and Barret are BIG and fast, while Senatla is small and fast. It is all about size buddy. Next time read slowly so you could understand.

  • humblepie

    I suggest that Old School thinkers should be banned from using social media. Their contributions should be typed and posted via Post Office. I suggest they use the postal address that Zelim is using for correspondence.

    • Mike S

      Explain the new school thinking about rugby to me. You “new school thinkers” aren’t thinkers at all. You blindly run with the headlines. If a fullback finishes a movement after a break made by a centre, you hail him as the hero. If a flyhalf contributes 20 points with the boot, you make him man of the match, no matter that he never passed the ball, never found touch or missed five tackles. If a prop scores a try you call him a good prop, even though he got penalised in three scrums for yielding under pressure. If the Blitzboks win Dubai, they should all be 15’s Springboks. If a wing scores a spectacular try in his Currie Cup debut, you want him in the Springbok side. The fact that he was beaten on the outside because of bad positioning on defense slips by you. The fact that he dropped two high balls also doesn’t matter. A scrumhalf scores two tries while hanging around at centre, because he is too lazy to get into position behind the ruck and you call him a good scrumhalf. “He has to be a Springbok”. Only the headline matters. Thinkers, my **se.

      Rugby is a basic game. You have to be able to do all the basics first to succeed. You have to earn your stripes. You don’t pick a twenty year old for the Springbok side because he was the star twenty year old. You first pick him for his provincial side. You don’t pick fat flankers at prop. You pick people who love scrumming. You don’t pick oversized wings at flank. You pick someone who is willing to graft in the tight loose as well. If that is “old school thinking” then I am an “old school thinker”. It is the only way to win rugby matches.

      In general, if a player does not regularly play in a position, he is going to be caught out at some point in the game, no matter how talented he is.

      I have not seen one single bit of player analysis from any new school thinker here, that shows he is a thinker. Name calling I have seen a lot of. It is somewhat like swearing. When you run out of arguments, you resort to name calling.

  • Bruce Kokkinn

    A complete lack of objectivity and maximum bias by Zelim! Get out of here!

  • Nic

    It is two different types of rugby. It is like saying Usain Bolt is not as good as Mo Farrah. They are both top athletes but with different abilities. Not a well thought through article. Scores about the same as Toetie

  • Hilton

    I’m not sure why anyone thinks that Sevens players need to ‘upgrade’ to the 15 code. It’s a totally different ball game requiring different skills, tactics, conditioning and quite frankly a different type of player. Of course there will be cross-over to some extent as the biggest or fastest Sevens player may be perfect for the 15 game but to automatically assume that every Sevens player is either a 15s outcast or that he even wants to play 15s is ridiculous.

    I do however firmly believe that 15 code players such as flankers, eighthman and the entire back line could do with a season of Sevens to sharpen up their line break awareness and general running and passing skills.

    • Mike S

      Brilliant comment. Perfect analysis.

  • Greg Stewart

    Zelim and Mike – you are simply trying to defend the indefensible and its a shame. Fundamentally the two games have different dimensions and require different skills but some players are able to cross over between the two. But to compare 7’s rugby to the left-overs and second rate rugby players is a disgrace and you both owe the Blitz Bokke an apology – or don’t and push your heads further into your own rear ends & keep your ridiculous opinions to yourself. The Bitz Bokke are superb athletes and have amazing game reading and passing / running rugby / ball handling and defensive abilities that the Springboks could certainly learn a thing or two from. If all you admire is a brute force, Blue Bull – run and bash form of rugby then you actually don’t appreciate good 15 man rugby anyhow.

    • Mike S

      I fully agree. They are brilliant athletes who are very skillful and they are very good at playing sevens. Very few of them are Springbok material though. That was what the article was about.

      “Leftovers” was an inappropriate description of a team that has become the best in the world at sevens, under a brilliant sevens coach. However, when most of them were first drafted, they were not required by their provincial sides. “Leftovers” is probably insulting, but at the time, they were surplus to requirements.

      Yes some players, the very fast and the slightly larger will cross over, but size matters, even when you are very fast and have very good footwork.

      Nobody even mentioned the Blue Bulls, although currently the are probably the second most attacking side after the Lions, thanks to some very quick outside backs. Did you notice that the two sides in the Currie Cup final, for what it is worth, relied very heavily on big forwards. None of the sides were the Blue Bulls.

    • Wesley

      Greg ma boooooi! Very well said. I seriously hope there is less of these type of rugby “thinkers” like Zelim and Mike in SA. Unfortunately when I look at who the Boks choose game in and game out, or what some stampkarre gameplan the provincial unions run instead of using their talent wisely, shows little hope to me.

  • RN Lubbe

    I believe that some of the comments and the writer of this article here are completely missing the point. Sevens rugby is a discipline completely on its own. Although a couple of players make it in the 15 man game it is a completely different mindset approach. The only thing 15’s can learn from 7’s is their discipline and the culture they have adopted. Maybe money has ruined the game.

  • Peter

    “Skelm” Nel and his soul supporter will probably be watching European 15’s this weekend….and dreaming back to the days the ” Blou Trosse” won Super Rugby.
    Shame…..when grown up men write such drivel…are so biased….so ill informed; and then try to justify their drivel with irrelevant comparisons…..it actually starts to sound like they were never breast feed….or evolution passed them by!!!

  • William

    Sure, 7s Rugby and 15s Rugby are two different ball games, and I agree we may be given some “false perceptions” seeing how well the Blitzbokke are doing and how pathetic the Springbokke are at current. Case and point made with Seabelo Senatla, a master of 7s, but not quite so with 15-man rugby. Not saying he’s bad at it, he is actually pretty good, but it’s not his style and he is quite fitting in…

    But saying that none could perform on the test field?
    Absolutely ridiculous!!!

    1) Kwagga Smith – he has been absolutely phenominal, winning 4 or 5 Superugby man-of-the-match awards and also earning the MOTM award against the All Blacks! And all rightly so.
    (Perhaps only short of Jaco Kriel and Marcell Coetzee)
    2) Werner Kok – everyone knows this man gives 110% at all times. He’s tackling is solid, and he is a ferocious attacker! The energy, passion and determination he puts into the game is more than I have ever seen. He is quick on his feet, and he hardly ever stays on the ground for over 0.5 seconds after making a tackle.
    (He should at least be a consided or acknowledged)

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