Blitzbok bubble boosts Brown
The Springbok Sevens team’s Olympic Games preparation camp, now well into its second week, continues to be beneficial to the squad and for Ronald Brown, only good things came from their time in Johannesburg.
The sweeper, who along with flyhalf Lubabalo Dobela, are the only uncapped players in the Blitzbok squad, knows the surrounds of their Sandton base, having graduated from the nearby University of Johannesburg, before moving down to Stellenbosch to pursue a career in sevens rugby.
With the Olympics but a couple of weeks away, Brown and Dobela are still in the running to make the final squad that will travel to Tokyo next month and according to the former UJ kingpin, he continues to grow as a player thanks to the environment he finds himself in.
"I have been in the system for a while now, so what I do know by now is that everyone must contribute to make it work,” said Brown.
“It is easy for me to contribute when you learn from the likes of Justin Geduld and Branco du Preez. The bubble makes it easier to focus and we still learn from each other, on and off the field, so it is great being here.”
The Blitzboks will again play matches against the SA All Stars Sevens Academy on Friday and after last weekend's round of matches, Brown is confident that they will keep benefitting from the time on the field.
"We are getting stronger and being in the bubble helps us understand each other better off the field as well, and that again helps us on the field," he concluded.
Dobela, who played for the Junior Springboks and Toyota Cheetahs before taking up a sevens contract, said he knew it would be tough to join the Blitzboks, but he was still surprised.
"The challenge is real, especially the cardio part of that," Dobela admitted.
"When I got to Stellenbosch, the integration was easy, as the guys really were welcoming, but then training starts and you realise this is a different level.” Touring with the team has been great, he said.
“You learn so much when on tour with the guys, you can't really go home after training when in camp like this and you get to know people much closer. That is great and something I really appreciate,” added Dobela.
“In the beginning it was nerves, but it has blossomed into something more now, there is so much to learn from a group like this.”
The camp concludes on Sunday when the team will return to Stellenbosch.
Issued by SA Rugby