Team South Africa ended sixth in the final standings at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, after the national rugby sevens team were handed two straight defeats on Sunday, missing out on a spot on the podium as the country’s campaign came to a close.
The Blitzboks, who lifted their maiden title at the 2014 Glasgow Games, lost 24-19 to Fiji in their semifinal before falling 21-14 to England in the bronze medal playoff.
“In the first half against England we were in the game. Unfortunately towards the end they stole the game from us,” said Blitzboks captain Philip Snyman, who was revealed as the SA flag bearer for the closing ceremony.
“I think we have only ourselves to blame for that, and really sad about this performance.”
The SA women’s sevens team settled for eighth and last place after going down 19-14 to Wales in the playoffs.
While they matched the 13 gold medals they earned at the Glasgow showpiece four years ago, where they ended seventh on the table, the SA team bagged three less medals in Gold Coast with a tally of 37.
They had been ahead of New Zealand heading into the final day of action at the 11-day multi-sport showpiece, but the New Zealanders bagged two more golds to climb the ladder.
The national athletics team earned 14 medals, with the swimming squad taking home 12. The lawn bowls contingent also made a significant contribution with five podium performances.