The Blitzboks will have the chance to climb into a decisive lead in the World Rugby Sevens series after frontrunners Argentina were knocked out on day one of the London leg.
A crowd of more than 46 000 fans at Twickenham saw Argentina fail to reach the quarter-finals after they suffered a last-gasp 22-21 loss to Ireland in their concluding Pool C encounter.
That means South Africa have the opportunity to clinch the title should they reach Sunday’s final, with the Blitzboks facing Australia in the last eight.
Argentina currently lead the series rankings on 118 points, two ahead of SA and eight clear of Australia.
SA, Olympic champions Fiji, World Cup Sevens winners New Zealand and Samoa all topped their pools with perfect win records en route to reaching the quarter-finals.
“It was a good day, results wise, for us,” said Blitzboks captain Siviwe Soyizwapi. “We have tough opponents in Australia [on Sunday]. There is no easy game in the series and we will be up against it.
“The Aussies has been tough opponents all series long, so we will have to be at our best if we want to stay successful.”
Hosts England will face Fiji after victories over Scotland and Japan saw them into the knockout stages despite a defeat by Samoa in their final pool match.
Fiji arrived at Twickenham after reaching the final in the last three rounds since returning to the series, winning gold twice in Toulouse and Singapore, and are also the defending champions in London, having won the title the last time the event took place in 2019.
London is the penultimate round in this year’s edition before the series finishes in Los Angeles.
© Agence France-Presse
Photo: Twitter: @Blitzboks