The South Africans fought back to beat Belgium in a pulsating final at the Markötter Stadium, the same venue for next weekend’s second round of the series, to be played Friday to Sunday.

“We really had to show our character today and what I saw was very pleasing,” said Dazel.

“We have been together as a squad for three months, but you don’t know how the team’s character will come through in matches of this nature, so that was very pleasing for me to see what they delivered.

“Especially in that match against China this morning, we had to dig deep, and the players showed how much they wanted to win, so I am proud and satisfied with that.”

Dazel also praised his players’ defensive effort on Saturday, and he applauded the impact the replacements made.

“We did a lot of work on defence in the last couple of months and the players showed their appetite for making tackles today – in fact, all tournament long,” said Dazel. “The players were under pressure, but responded with a great attitude and we can celebrate the win because of that.

“Players like Nadine Roos and Libbie Janse van Rensburg, who did not train with us in the three months, really stepped up well and came through when they came off the bench. Every time I called upon them, they made a difference, and it is wonderful for a coach to have a strong starting team as well as a bench that can lift the energy and skill even more.”

Dazel warned though that their job is not yet completed and they have to be sharp again in six days’ time.

“Next weekend, we go again, and this coming week we will work on our attack a bit, and depending on which teams we will play, will plan accordingly,” he said.

“We will do the analysis this week on those teams and worked out plans. One thing I am hoping to see though, is a better effort on attack, we did not play as well as we should with ball in hand. If we do that better, next weekend’s result will look after itself.”

The Springbok Women’s Sevens are first seeds for next weekend’s tournament and will face Thailand, Madagascar and Paraguay in Pool A. They beat both Thailand and Madagascar on Friday before maintaining their undefeated record on the final day.

“I believe the fact that we prepared in three-day cycles also helped us today,” added Dazel.

“We changed our training programme to go hard for three days to prepare us for these tournaments, and that helped us today, on the third day of this competition. Next week will be a different challenge all together, I know, but the win will do wonders for the players.”