Francois Hougaard helped South Africa to the Cup final of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series in London at the weekend – but the Blitzboks missed out on the title after defeat to Scotland.
South Africa had defeated overall Series leaders Fiji to reach the final and led Scotland 26-15 with two minutes remaining before they were stunned by a late comeback.
The result was enough to confirm South Africa’s second-placed finish in the overall table as preparations for the 2016 Olympics continue.
In the opening day of the London leg of the competition, Hougaard crossed the whitewash in a 21-7 victory against Canada, before helping his country to a 14-10 win over the USA.
The Biltzboks concluded the pool stages with a 22-0 rout of Samoa to cement their place as winners of Pool A.
In the second day of competition, Hougaard played in South Africa’s narrow 21-19 quarter-final victory over Argentina and started in the semi-final, where his country overcame a stubborn Fiji side to record an impressive 26-21 victory.
In the final Hougaard once again started for the Blitzboks, who found themselves 10-7 down at half-time.
An impressive fight-back gave South Africa a 26-15 lead before Scotland stole victory at the death.
Hougaard and South Africa will now turn their attentions to the Rio Olympics, which get underway on Saturday 6 August.