Border stars in the Bok world Sevens frame

CALLED UP FOR SA: Zintle Mpupha, captain of Border Women, is one of two players called up to the South African world Sevens squad to prepare for the Series in Dubai next month. Also in the squad is fellow star Eloise Webb Picture: GALLO IMAGES
CALLED UP FOR SA: Zintle Mpupha, captain of Border Women, is one of two players called up to the South African world Sevens squad to prepare for the Series in Dubai next month. Also in the squad is fellow star Eloise Webb Picture: GALLO IMAGES
BORDER women rugby stars Zintle Mpupha and Eloise Webb were yesterday called up to the Springbok Women’s Sevens squad.

Coach Renfred Dazel invited Border captain and flyhalf Mpupha, fullback Webb and KwaZulu-Natal centre Zinhle Ndawonde, to train with his squad in the lead-up to the HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series tournament in Dubai on December 1 and 2.

“I had already been told that I was going to be called up to the Sevens team, so it didn’t come as a surprise but I am still very happy,” said Mpupha.

“I am looking forward to playing for the team but I know that there will be a lot of hard work to do before that and I am willing to put in the time and effort.

“We have now been invited back into the World Series and I want to help the team go out there and show the other teams what we are made of,” she said.

Ndawonde, Mpupha and Webb, who were key members of their respective teams in the SA Rugby Women’s Interprovincial Tournament and Interprovincial Sevens competitions, were scouted by Dazel at the Sevens showpiece in Nelspruit two weeks ago, and at the Women’s 15s training camp in Cape Town last month.

Mpupha and Webb have already had a taste of what is to come at camp after training with the Springbok Women’s Sevens on a trial basis last week in Stellenbosch, while Ndawonde will train with the squad for the first time next week.

They will assemble with the rest of the squad in Stellenbosch on Sunday after the team was given the week off to rest and recover from niggling injuries, before the coaches step up the intensity of the training sessions for the season-opening Dubai Sevens.

Dazel’s scouting at the SA Rugby Interprovincial Sevens also played off last season as Nadine Roos, Chane Stadler, Nomsa Mokwai and Lamla Momoti were invited to train with the squad following the tournament, and all four players are now key members of the team.

“Zintle, Eloise and Zinhle have been in solid form this year,” said Dazel.

“It is clear through their conditioning and standard of play that they have a good work ethic, and I have no doubt that they will slot into the team with ease.”

Turning his attention to the Dubai Sevens, Dazel was excited about the challenge and said they planned to step up their preparations next week.

The Springbok Women’s Sevens were invited by World Rugby to participate in the tournament.

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