Hougie back for Blitzboks

Francois Hougaard has rejoined the Blitzboks ahead of the Paris and London Sevens.

Hougaard played in the first four tournaments in Dubai, Cape Town, Wellington and Sydney, and has just returned from a stint with English Premiership club Worcester.

The Springbok Sevens side currently lies second in the World Rugby Sevens Series standings, and Hougaard's return will provide a timely boost as they prepare for the final two tournaments.

'It is nice to see Francois back,' coach Neil Powell commented. 'He did well for us in the first four tournaments and I am sure he will fit in nicely this week. He remains committed to try and make the squad that will travel to the Olympic Games in Rio later this year and I will keenly follow his progress in this regard.'

Powell also confirmed that only Carel du Preez and Werner Kok from the contracted group of players will not be considered for the last two legs of the series. Both are still recovering from injuries, but are expected to be available for consideration for the Olympic squad.

'Frankie Horne is coming back from injury and if he makes it through this week, will be considered for selection,' Powell added.

Horne, who played in 68 consecutive tournaments for South Africa, injured his ankle early in the year and has yet to appear in the 2015-16 series.

The Blitzboks are grouped in Pool B with Australia, England and Brazil for the Paris Sevens, with the squad for the final two tournaments set to be named on Friday.

Photo: Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

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