Tricky Ricky Blizboks World Rugby Sevens Series Getty Images

Ricardo Duarttee scores for the Blitzboks. Photo: @Blitzboks/Twitter/Getty Images.

Blitzboks’ Tricky Ricky has an ace up his sleeve

Ricardo Duarttee, best known as Tricky Ricky, hopes to be a ray of sunshine to the Blitzboks’ effort at the Perth Sevens this weekend.

Tricky Ricky Blizboks World Rugby Sevens Series Getty Images

Ricardo Duarttee scores for the Blitzboks. Photo: @Blitzboks/Twitter/Getty Images.

Duarttee has returned to the fold for the Blitzboks after being overlooked for the first couple of season tournaments. But he is back and ready to deliver for his country.

MUST READ | A rugby wish list for 2024

After being named as World Rugby’s Rookie of the Year for the 2023 season, “Tricky Ricky” missed out on Blitzbok’s selection for the Dubai and Cape Town tournaments as the coaching staff decided to go with a fit-again Selvyn Davids and Ronald Brown in the playmaker/sweeper role.

This time around, though, and much to his relief, Duarttee was named in the Blitzboks squad to travel to the third tournament of the season.

“It is massive to be back,” said Duarttee. “It was not nice missing out as I wanted to be part of another full season, but I understand why the coaches opted for a different combination.

“You have to handle disappointments as well, as it’s all part of the bigger meaning of life. For me, it was a matter of self-belief. I still believed that I could contribute to the team and worked hard to prove that. This weekend will not be about me, though. It will be about the team and how we can perform here in Perth.”

MUST READ | Springboks duo undergo surgery! Setback or blessing?

Duarttee is quick to add that, despite the accolade from last season, he is still learning and growing as a sevens player, and he tuned into his responsibilities for the Blitzboks this weekend.

“There are some really good players in this set-up, and in a way, I was lucky to be able to learn from them when I arrived here,” he said.

“That has not changed as I still try and become a better player every day. Communication is important. Everybody must know what the others are planning or expecting. Off the field, I am also hoping to be putting the guys in a good mood and wanting to go out there and enjoy the moment.”

ALSO READ | Springbok fans cautioned against FAKE Test ticket scams

Blitzboks’ pool fixtures in Perth:

SA v Canada, 6:44 am
SA v Spain, 12:22 pm

SA v Argentina, 6:38 am

ALSO READ | Springbok ace lands Currie Cup top job

Blitzboks Selvyn Davids, Rosko Specman, Tricky Ricky and Shilton van Wyk. Photo: SA Rugby.