Tuks out to retain 7s crown as women's tournament kicks off
Tuks also head into the competition with momentum on their side having won the USSA 7s Tournament last month.
JOHANNESBURG - The 7th edition of Varsity 7s takes place at the Pirates Rugby Club this weekend with defending champions UP Tuks looking to retain their title.
The men from Pretoria were the dominant force in last year’s tournament, scoring 201 points across their six matches on their way to a maiden 7s crown.
Tuks also head into the competition with momentum on their side having won the USSA 7s Tournament last month, beating UJ 7-5 in the final.
Blitzboks legend and Olympic bronze medalist, Kyle Brown, said this was an important structure to grow the game of 7s in the country.
“The more platforms we can create for guys to be seen and give the national coaches something to look at the better as it gives Neill [Powell] more scouting options for the Blitzboks”, he said.
“I think it would be helpful if there were more structures towards developing players from a younger age because 7s is now a professional career in the rugby sphere, so it would be great if there were more opportunities for these guys to get their name out their”, he said.
This year also sees the inaugural staging of the Women’s 7s tournament. The teams competing include UP Tuks, UJ, UKZN and UFH.
Brown said South Africa have been lagging behind when it came to women’s rugby in both the 7s and 15s formats.
“I think all we looking for is more structures and more systems for women to play rugby. So much of the stunted growth of women’s rugby in South Africa is due to the perception problems we have, we see rugby as a male sport and its very difficult for a girl to say she wants to play rugby”, he said.
“Worldwide, it’s the fastest-growing sector of rugby at the moment and over the last 10 years, the skill level has increased drastically so we have a lot of work to do to make sure that our girls catch up to that level as quickly as possible”, he said.
The tournament will start on Friday with Tuks taking on UFH in the opening match at 9 am.