The consequences of inconsistency were starkly punished when the Blitzboks ended a lowly 10th place at the Hamilton leg of the World Sevens Series on 26 January 2020.
It's been almost seven years since the Blitzboks were consigned to a 10th place finish at a World Series event, but that is the reality of what happened in Hamilton. The last time they were among the rank and file of Sevens rugby was at Hong Kong in 2013.
That year, the Blitzboks bounced back after that anomaly to win the next two tournaments in Tokyo and Edinburgh, ultimately ending second in the overall standings behind New Zealand. It's going to take some similar heroics this season to repair the damage of what happened in Hamilton.
After the debacle, the Blitzboks are still second on the current 2019/2020 standings but they are now a distant 15 points behind New Zealand. South Africa and Hamilton runners-up, France, are locked on 48 log points with New Zealand - winners in Cape Town and runners-up in Dubai - topping the standings with 63 points.
Losing so much ground in one tournament is catastrophic for the Blitzboks' overall title ambitions and their only hope is that...