Siviwe Soyizwapi scored four tries as the Blitzboks defeated Ireland 45-7 in their opening game of the Sevens World Cup in San Francisco on Saturday. MARIETTE ADAMS reports.
The victory earned Blitzboks a quarter-final against Scotland at the expense of Ireland, who scraped past Chile 17-12 in the qualifying round.
South Africa started with two playmakers in Justin Geduld and Selvyn Davids, and it was this ploy that led to Ireland’s undoing. Ireland were unable to defend against the excellent interplay between the duo, while they also failed to negate Geduld’s hanging kick-off restarts.
Apart from Soyizwapi’s four tries, Geduld bagged a brace and Werner Kok ran in a brilliant individual effort.
The Blitzboks were in the ascendancy from the start, but the opening score only came in the fourth minute when Geduld showed great awareness to reach out despite being flanked by two defenders.
A lethal step and a brutal hand-off saw Soyizwapi leave two tacklers in his wake before touching down and a minute later the speedster crossed over again as South Africa led 19-0 at the break.
It was carnage in the second half. Straight from the restart, captain Philip Snyman freed up Kok down the left flank and the latter ran the length of the field.
Ireland’s poor handling of the kick-offs came to the fore again as first Geduld completed his brace, before Soyizwapi scored his hat-trick try and fourth in quick succession.
Leading 45-0, South Africa switched off and their lapse in concentration gave Ireland an opportunity to score a consolation try.
Quarter-final fixtures (SA time):
South Africa vs Scotland (00:32am)
Argentina vs Fiji (00:54am)
France vs New Zealand (1:16am)
USA vs England (1:38am)
— Rugby World Cup Sevens (@WorldRugby7s) July 21, 2018