Bryan Habana. Picture: AFP
Bryan Habana. Picture: AFP

THE Blitzboks are aiming for their fourth Las Vegas Sevens crown in six years this weekend when they continue their fight for the overall World Sevens Series title.

With the addition of 15s stars Ryan Kankowski and Bryan Habana to the 13-man touring party for the North American leg, there is a sprinkling of the unknown about the team.

But it is the return of Sevens stalwarts from injury such as captain Kyle Brown, top points scorer Cecil Afrika, Branco du Preez and Justin Geduld that add the most punch to the squad.

Habana and Kankowski might be headline names, but they will be very much fringe players this weekend as the Blitzboks look to pull clear of rivals Fiji and New Zealand at the season’s halfway stage. The three sides are locked together on 69 points after four rounds of the 10-round campaign.

SA are drawn in Pool D with hosts USA, Canada and Wales. The US have been the surprise team of the 2015-16 series, having finished third in Dubai.

The Blitzboks will aim to tidy up their discipline, which has cost them at crucial times this year. SA have been handed six yellow cards in four tournaments, the same number as Fiji and New Zealand.

In more positive territory, the Blitzboks have been excellent defensively, topping the tackle count with 534, which is well over 100 more than Fiji.

They have also scored a total of 609 points, almost 100 more than New Zealand, but well behind Fiji’s 707.

"Intensity and discipline are two of the areas that we basically had a look at and said it is important, especially in the knockout stages," coach Neil Powell said.

"Our focus going into the knockout stages is be to be more disciplined and trying not to give away cards in the knockout stages because it will cost you."

Brown indicated that home ground advantage would make the USA an even more difficult opponent this weekend.

"They always make it something special when they play here, with fighter jets flying over and then adding the emotion of their anthem.

"As a player, it’s nice to be part of such a fixture and you know that as a team, you will have to be incredibly strong and focused," Brown said.