Van Wyk’s last-gasp try puts the Blitzboks into the Dubai final | News Bharat

Shilton van Wyk © Getty Images

A try from Shilton van Wyk a minute into stoppage time in their semi-final against New Zealand put the Blitzboks into the Dubai Sevens final against Ireland as they completed a thrilling 26-19 triumph over their old foe.

It didn’t look like the South Africans had any chance of keeping their hopes of a fourth straight Dubai title alive during a first half dominated by the Kiwis. The All Blacks flew out of the blocks straight away, with a series of explosive plays and clever changes of direction that eventually culminated in 19-year-old Caleb Tagintau slotting over in the corner. Tagintau followed up with another try after a stunning run through the middle by LeRoy Carter, who was a constant thorn in the side for the Blitzboks.

And the New Zealanders could have been even further ahead than 12-0 at the break as they came back within a millimeter of scoring with Tagintau, again after great work from Carter, but the referee ruled with the ‘help from the TMO that had been. held over the line, with skipper Siviwe Soyizwape effectively saving the game for his side by coming in below Tagintau.

The Blitzboks were back in the game just after half-time, with Muller du Plessis using his blistering pace to round the New Zealand defense from the kick-off and then running the ball towards the posts to facilitate the conversion.

With it suddenly a five-point game, the Blitzboks were fired up again, and after a brilliant bit of creativity from Soyizwape it was SA first tournament hero Ricardo Duarttee who crossed for the try. The conversion hit, but the Blitzboks took the lead for the first time but were undone when a clever switch from the Kiwis inside their own half gave Akuila Rokilasoa the space he needed to run down the left flank to score a spectacular try.

The conversion gave New Zealand a five-point lead, so when Duarttee’s pass set up Branco du Plessis for the equaliser, the conversion became important with just over a minute to go. It was missed from quite a kickable position, which meant extra time was beckoning. But when not long after the All Blacks lost a player to the bin as they were guilty of repeated infringements as the Blitzboks put them under pressure with their attacking play, suddenly the game was there for the Blitzboks to win.

They showed great patience as they built on their one-man advantage, and after two penalties allowed them to maintain their attacking tempo, Duarttee was held up off the line a minute from time shot and Shilton van Wyk was the man who was. to run the ball with a quick touch for the winning try amid scenes of South African jubilation.

Ireland had earlier won their way to their first Dubai final by scoring a try in extra time after a 7-all draw in normal time to secure a 12-7 victory over heavily favored USA .

If the Blitzboks win the final, it will be their 10th Dubai title and a record fourth in a row. The team they beat in the semi-final is the only other team to have won the trophy in Dubai in the last seven years.

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