South Africa's Rugby Sevens team performed heroics to finish unbeaten at the World Games in Cali, Colombia, Seabelo Senatla scoring two of their five tries in a fine final as they beat Argentina 33-24 to claim a deserved gold medal.
One month after the disappointment of exiting the Rugby World Cup Sevens at the quarter-final stage in Moscow, the South Africans, captained by fit-again Kyle Brown, saw off both France and Argentina en route to the title at the Pascual Guerrero Stadium.
The Argentines claimed the silver medal, while a young Canadian side finished well to overcome France to take bronze at what is the last World Games to feature Rugby Sevens with the sport joining the Olympic Games in Rio in 2016.
The first of the knock-out matches on the second day of competition went to form with South Africa beating Uruguay 36-0, France just edging Hong Kong 14-12, Argentina overpowering the hosts Colombia 49-5 and Canada beating Brazil 26-7.
In the semi-finals the South Africans rose to the challenge against France to win 33-12 and Argentina joined them in the final by beating Canada 19-7.
In the final the flying Seabelo Senatla touched down twice for the Blitzbokke to add to tries from Steven Hunt, Willem-Johannes Strydom and Mark Richards as Vuyo Zangqa's side battled to the 33-24 win against the strong Puma effort.
Canada finished on a high to defeat France and claim the bronze medal, Hong kong beat Brazil to fifth and Uruguay overcame hosts Colombia to finish seventh.
Rugby Sevens at World Games - roll of honour
South Africa - gold
Argentina - silver
Canada - bronze
Fiji - gold
Portugal - silver
South Africa - bronze
Fiji - gold
South Africa - silver
Argentina - bronze
Fiji - gold
Australia - silver
New Zealand - bronze
Player Quotes of Support
“More than anything, Sevens embodies the Olympic ideals of camaraderie, fair play and respect on and off the field of play.” – Shane Williams, Wales
“You play sport at the highest level to challenge yourself to be the best that you can possibly be and to compete with the best from all over the world, and what better stage to do that on than at the Olympics?” – Sue Day, England
“Going to the Commonwealth Games was amazing and to have the chance to go to the Olympics would be right up there with anything you could possibly dream of doing in sport.” – Tamati Ellison, New Zealand
CLICK HERE FOR MORE SUPPORT QUOTES >>