Wales in perfect prep for Gold Coast Sevens
A strong Wales Sevens outfit beat South Africa twice at the weekend en route to the Nashua Middelburg Sevens title in South Africa.
While a Welsh development side was finishing 10th at the second round of the FIRA European Sevens Grand Prix in Bucharest, a more seasoned squad was crowned champions over 5,000 miles away, beating the favourites 26-12 in the final at the Mpumalanga Highveld to end their five-year title reign.
The trip, which combined travel, recovery, training, game time and ultimately a tournament victory, proved the perfect preparation for Paul John's team just three weeks out from the Gold Coast Sevens, round one of the HSBC Sevens World Series 2013/14.
"The tournament was just what we wanted as we had some tough games. Every one of the 16 boys was given a chance. To beat South Africa twice, once in pool play and once in the final, was very pleasing," said John.
"We were invited to play in the tournament last year where we lost to South Africa so it was good to turn the tables against a very good side with quite a few familiar faces in it," he added.
Llandovery's Chris Knight scored two tries with Carmarthen Quins duo Lee Williams and James Davies chipping in with one apiece, while Cross Keys' Rhys Jones kicked three conversions as Wales pulled away in the second spell to win the tournament at the second attempt.
They had earlier gone about their business clinically and efficiently, conceding a single try in a massive 40-7 victory over the Pumas.
They then raced to a 19-0 half-time lead over Zimbabwe in the semis, but allowed the Cheetahs back to within five points, before prevailing 26-14.