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02 Feb 2010 12:16
Former Reds skills coach and Australian touch rugby expert Jason Stanton has joined the Springbok Sevens team to assist the South Africans in their preparations for the Wellington tournament which starts on Friday in the New Zealand capital.
Stanton helped Australia to three consecutive touch rugby world titles, and is a former skills coach of the Super Rugby franchise, the Queensland Reds, and last year he guided the Australian women’s team to victory in the inaugural IRB Sevens World Cup in Dubai.
“Jason has an amazing track record as a skills coach and he is obviously highly respected in both rugby and touch rugby circles.
“He has a refreshingly different approach to skills coaching and I am delighted has joined us for the week in Wellington,” said Treu.
Treu guided the Springboks to IRB Series honours last season, but he and his team has found the going extremely tough during the opening part of the new campaign.
Injuries to key players and the loss of several regulars to provincial and Super 14 has dealt the team a heavy blow, and South Africa are currently in eighth place on the log with 16 points.
New Zealand lead the title chase with a maximum 48 points after tournament victories in Dubai and George in December.
Treu has arranged a warm-up match against Tonga on Wednesday and he is very keen to give all four newcomers a run against the physical Pacific Islanders.
“We play Niue in our first match on Friday and Tonga would therefore be the ideal team to prepare against as they play a very similar style of rugby.
“Chase Minnaar and Marius Schoeman might not play because both of them have a bit of an upset stomach problem, but they should be okay for the captain’s run on Thursday,” explained Treu.
South Africa’s second match on Friday is against the World Cup winners Wales and they end the first day with a tough assignment against hosts and tournament favourites New Zealand.—Sapa
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