Blitzboks' Selvyn Davids makes his name in Vancouver

Selvyn Davids of South Africa during the quarter final match between South Africa and Scotland on day 2 of the Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 at AT&T Park on July 21, 2018 in San Francisco, United States of America.
Selvyn Davids of South Africa during the quarter final match between South Africa and Scotland on day 2 of the Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 at AT&T Park on July 21, 2018 in San Francisco, United States of America.
Image: Martin Seras Lima/Gallo Images

Although Selvyn Davids has been part of the Blitzboks’ squad for almost a year; he truly arrived in Vancouver last weekend with a series of astonishing performances of skill and flair.

Playing sweeper‚ the former Nico Malan High School star had to fill the metaphorical big boots of Branco du Preez and Rosko Specman‚ the two players who have occupied that role with distinction for years.

Having previously been understudy to Du Preez this season‚ Davids thrived when coach Neil Powell elevated him to the starting lineup. Some players wilt under the weight of expectation and some thrive and blossom.

Davids did the latter.

He finished as the tournament’s leading points scorer with 59 as the Blitzboks went on to record their first tournament win of the 2018/19 season.

He was named Player of the Final as well.

Davids even set up the try of the season when he used soccer skills by keeping a ball in play in the Pool match against Wales. His skills went viral on social media‚ which even prompted some PSL clubs to offer him a trial.

“I did not expect to be named Player of the Final‚ but this award is as much the team's as it is mine‚” Davids said.

“Without them‚ I would be nothing. We play for each other that is what the team stands for. Remember‚ when you put that jersey on‚ it is not about you anymore. It is about the team and those that the jersey represent.”

Davids admitted some nerves and emotion as they contested the first final he was involved in: “This was my first final‚ so it was very emotional‚ but I knew I had my team mates backing me and I had trust in them.

“Branco has been a stalwart in the team and I learned so much from him and Rosko as well as Cecil Afrika in the last couple of seasons‚” said Davids.

“Even when Coach Neil said that I was going to start‚ Branco still supported me. I want to thank both for that support. I am just happy that I took my chance and did justice to the confidence coach had in me.

"We have a ‘small box‚ big box’ system in the team. The big box is the game plan and the structures and processes we follow‚ the small box is the players and how we express ourselves inside that bigger box. We did that very well this weekend.”

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