Captain Philip Snyman believes the next generation of players coming through the Blitzboks’ ranks will take the team to great heights.
Snyman, who played in his 62nd World Series tournament in Paris this past weekend, reflected on a season where the Blitzboks finished fourth overall, behind Fiji, the USA and New Zealand.
Snyman says the rebuilding phase of the team proved fruitful this season, despite the loss of experienced campaigners such as Kwagga Smith, Ruhan Nel, Dylan Sage, Seabelo Senatla, Tim Agaba and Rosko Specman to fifteens, which had an effect on the team’s consistency during the early part of the season.
However, a number of young players stepped up, with the likes of JC Pretorius, Muller du Plessis, Angelo Davids, Kurt-Lee Arendse, Mfundo Ndhlovu, Impi Visser, James Murphy, Stedman Gans, Dewald Human and Sako Makata all performing admirably.
‘I am confident that the next group of players can take the team to the same heights as before,’ said Snyman, who won three World Series titles as a Blitzbok, the last two as captain of the side.
‘Everyone understands that you only have the jersey for a certain amount of time, and the responsibility is to leave it in a better place than before. You never know when it is your last game, so for every match you play, you must give it your all,’ he added.
Snyman says the 24-7 victory over the USA in the bronze medal playoff at the Paris Sevens was a good way for the squad to finish the season.
‘One always remembers your last game, so for us it would be beating the USA for the bronze medal. That was a nice way to round off the season.
‘We left the field with smiles on our faces and hearts full of joy, knowing that we left nothing out there. You can’t ask for much more,’ Snyman explained.