WP’s Del­port named new Sev­ens cap­tain

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - SPORT -

PAUL DEL­PORT was yes­ter­day named as cap­tain of the Spring­bok Sev­ens squad for the up­com­ing IRB Sev­ens World Se­ries.

Del­port’s el­e­va­tion is a nat­u­ral suc­ces­sion af­ter pre­vi­ously cap­tain­ing the SA schools and na­tional Un­der-21 and Un­der-19 teams.

Spring­bok Sev­ens coach Paul Treu be­lieves Del­port’s ap­point­ment as cap­tain for the new sea­son would fur­ther strengthen the ex­ist­ing lead­er­ship struc­tures within the squad.

“All the se­nior and con- tracted play­ers in the squad fully en­dorse Paul as their cap­tain for the sea­son,” said Treu.

“We want to cre­ate a plat­form for all our play­ers to ex­cel as leaders. This is part of the legacy we want to build. In the fu­ture, there will be new cap­tains and leaders who will take over from Paul, so it’s im­por­tant to have many leaders in our setup. The Bulls have proved to be suc­cess­ful thanks to their leaders such as Vic­tor Mat­field, Fourie du Preez and Bakkies Botha in their squad.”

Play­ers such as Mzwandile Stick, Mpho Mbiy­ozo and Neil Pow­ell, who have pre­vi­ously cap­tained the SA Sev­ens side, are all ex­pected to play a huge role as se­nior play­ers in the side that in­tends to de­fend the IRB Sev­ens World Se­ries crown.

“Our men­tal­ity within the squad is that of a team and not in­di­vid­u­als. While Paul has been named cap­tain, our strength will con­tinue to be based on a team ef­fort. That’s what I ex­pect,” added Treu.

The 25 year-old Del­port rep­re­sented the Storm­ers and the Cats at Su­per Rugby level, and played Cur­rie Cup and Voda- com Cup rugby for West­ern Prov­ince be­fore switch­ing to Sev­ens.

“It’s an un­be­liev­able feel­ing and it’s a huge hon­our and chal­lenge to cap­tain the Spring­bok Sev­ens side, who are the best team in the world,” said Del­port. ”Our goal will be to con­tinue from where we left off last sea­son.”

The Sev­ens squad, who are cur­rently in Stel­len­bosch pre­par­ing for the up­com­ing in­ter na­tional sea­son, be­gin their de­fence of their IRB Sev­ens World Se­ries ti­tle in Dubai on De­cem­ber 4. – Sapa

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