Samoa beat Fiji 19-14 in a bruising final at Twickenham to win the Emirates Airline London Sevens title, their third ever World Series Cup title.
The IRB reports that Lolo Lui scored a hat trick of tries to give Samoa an early 19-0 lead and although Fiji crossed just before the break through Timoci Matanavou and then in the second half through Sailosi Rabonaqica it proved too little too late. Nasoni Roko’s late try to equalise was correctly ruled out by referee David Keane after a late tackle in the build-up.
While New Zealand missed out on the Cup semi finals, beaten by Tom Biggs’ late try for hosts England, the kiwis did clinch the defence of their IRB Sevens World Series title with one event to spare.
Having won the first five events of the season in Dubai, George, Wellington, San Diego and Hong Kong, and finished runners-up in Adelaide, New Zealand entered this tournament hot favourites to tie up an eighth Series win. While they lost their London title, Nigel Hunt’s late winner in the Plate final against South Africa proved a fitting way to celebrate their continued dominance of the Series crown.
New Zealand now have 134 points from seven events, 36 clear of South Africa on 98, who lead the race for second place from Fiji (90) and Samoa (88).
New Zealand take Plate to finish on high
New Zealand exacted revenge on South Africa for their defeat in the Adelaide Cup final, winning the final of the Plate 19-12 with a try at the death by Nigel Hunt.
Both sides responded well to the disappointment of being dumped out of the Cup at the start of the second day and the high calibre final was as tight as the score suggests.
South Africa scored early on through a penalty try but the kiwis hit back through Tomasi Cama and Lote Raikabula, who was forced to play in the forwards in the final. The Boks scored after the break through MJ Mentz to level at 12-12 and after a tight seven minutes Hunt finally latched onto the ball out wide and cut back in to score.
Australia capture Bowl title
Australia beat Wales 19-12 to win the London Bowl and take two points in the IRB Sevens World Series.
The Australians led by two tries to one at the break, Peter Owens and Willy Bishop scoring either side of Aled Brew’s effort, and in the second half Caleb Brown’s converted stretched their lead to 19-7. Rhodri McAtee pulled one back for the Welsh with a couple of minutes to play but Australia held on.
Spain stun Kenya to win Shield
Spain won a famous 10-7 victory against the fifth-ranked Sevens side in the world Kenya to win the Shield at Twickenham.
Ignacio Martin crossed for the Spanish to lead 5-0 at the break and Cesar Sempere doubled their lead after the break. Horace Otieno grabbed a late consolation for the African side but could not prevent Spain claiming a first piece of IRB Sevens World Series silverware since 2004.
England women triumph over New Zealand Aotearoa Maori
Ahead of next year’s Rugby World Cup Sevens, which features men’s and women’s rugby for the first time, England’s women claimed their second win on the bounce against the New Zealand Aotearoa Maori at Twickenham, 14-10.
Emma Layland put the home side ahead but New Zealand bounced back just before half-time when Black Ferns stalwart Anna Richards set up Selica Winiata. Richards missed the conversion keeping England 7-5 ahead at the break. After the restart Ngahuri Thomas put the tourists 10-7 ahead but in the last seconds of the match Gemma Sharples beat two defenders to score.
The fixture also marked an historic day with New Zealand’s women playing their first international at Twickenham stadium.
England and their coach Simon Amor now head to Edinburgh for the Home Nations Sevens tournament next Sunday hoping to secure three tournament wins on the trot.Tweet