Kiwis make history in PE
Sun, 09 Dec 2012 12:16
New Zealand beat France in the final of the Port Elizabeth leg of the Sevens World Series to claim a record fourth consecutive SA Sevens victory.
The victory sees New Zealand take a commanding lead in the series standings, with a 14 point lead over their nearest rivals France.
The All Blacks scored seven tries thanks to a hat trick from Kurt Baker, the biggest scorer in the tournament in the final.
Their first victory in three finals this season extends the All Blacks' lead in the series to 60 points, 14 ahead of second-placed France.
It was a fitting birthday present for New Zealand coach Gordon Tietjens, who turned 57 on Sunday.
"I had a lot of luck with the teams over the last four years, to win here on my birthday, but I just feel for the players. They performed magnificently today," he said.
"We were beaten by a good Samoan team at the last tournament in Dubai, beaten by Fiji in Australia so we had to win this one."
He had empathy for the worn-out French side.
"They're probably harder done by in terms of having to play just about an extra game when they had to go into extra time."
The game is now on to defend their home title in the series' fourth leg in New Zealand in February next year.
"There's always pressure to win your own tournament. You can ask South Africa today," said Tietjens, adding that the side needed to rest first.
"We've got to get through Christmas and hopefully recover injuries. The guys took a few knocks over the last two weeks."
After winning only one game in the pool stages, France fought back to come in second.
Coach Frederic Pommarel was happy with his side's performance, though he conceded a few areas needed work.
"I'm very proud of the players, but I think we didn't develop a very good attacking game. Defensively I have some big fighters," he said.
In their semifinal match New Zealand beat South Africa 12-5, coming from 5-0 behind thanks to a try from Tomasi Cama, who also dealt the death blow to the hosts' dreams of home victory in last year's final.
Losing after coming so close to the final was tough for coach Paul Treu.
"It was very disappointing," he said.
"We had our chances and so did they, with the only difference that New Zealand took the one that mattered."
The Blitzbokke went on to a 35-0 victory over Argentina in the third-place playoff courtesy of a hat trick signed Cheslin Kolbe.
Defending Sevens world champions Wales took the Plate with a convincing 26-14 win over Fiji, the winner of this season's first leg.
Portugal, the only team besides South Africa to win all three of their pool matches, had to bow the knee to Fiji in the Plate semi finals, after they were relegated following a 10-7 defeat to France in the Cup quarter finals.
A young Australian side took the Bowl with four tries to score 26-14 against second-leg winners in Emirates Samoa.
Two tries from Pedro Martin gave Spain the edge in a 21-14 win over Zimbabwe for the Shield.
The All Blacks outscored the French by seven tries to two in the final to record a emphatic 47-12 victory.
Kurt Baker was hugely impressive bagging a hat-trick in the final. It was a hugely impressive win and a fitting end to a fantastic weekend in Port Elizabeth.
New Zealand 47 France 12
3rd/4th place play-off:
South Africa romped to a 35-0 win over Argentina in the Cup play-offs to take the bronze medal in the third leg of the Sevens World Series in Port Elizabeth on Sunday.
The Argentines had no reply to the hosts, with Cheslin Kolbe scoring a hat-trick of tries to lead the South Africans to victory.
South Africa 35-0 Argentina
Reigning Sevens world champions Wales defeated Fiji in an impressive Plate final display. James Davies scored twice for Paul John's side who ran out 26-14 winners.
Wales got into the final after beating the USA 26-19 in the semifinal. The Gold Coast Sevens champions Fiji beat Portugal 26-12 in their semifinal with Joji Raqamate scoring an impressive fourth try.
Wales 26-14 Fiji
Wales 26-19 USA
Fiji 26-12 Portugal
Michael O'Connor's young Australian side beat Samoa 26-14 in the Bowl final with tries coming from Con Foley, Greg Jeloudev, Junior Laloifi and Peter Lee.
In the semifinals a dramatic last-minute penalty drop goal for the islanders secured a 15-12 victory against England and Will Miller scored at the death in Australia's 24-21 over Kenya.
Australia came from 14-0 down to beat Zimbabwe 24-14 in the first match of the day with the second oldest player in the Australian side, 22-year-old Pama Fou scored twice for O'Connor's side.
Last week's Cup winners Samoa beat Canada 36-21 in the third quarterfinal, Alatasi Tupou scoring two of their five tries.
Kenya also won their first match, beating Scotland 19-17 thanks to a last-minute winner from the returning Humphrey Kayange and England defeated Spain 14-7.
Australia 26-14 Samoa
Australia 24-21 Kenya
England 12-15 Samoa
England 14-7 Spain
Canada 21-36 Samoa
Kenya 19-17 Scotland
Australia 24-14 Zimbabwe
Having lost to England in last week's Shield final, Spain won their second trophy of the season by beating Zimbabwe 33-0 in the final thanks to two tries from Pedro Martin.
Earlier Zimbabwe beat Scotland 21-14 and Spain earned an emphatic 29-12 win over Canada in the semifinals.
Spain 33-0 Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe 21-14 Scotland
Canada 12-29 Spain
New Zealand were forced to come from 5-0 behind to beat the hosts South Africa 12-5 thanks to yet another impressive display from Tomasi Cama.
In the second semifinal, France snatched victory in sudden death extra time after Manoel Dall Igna had drawn the scores level at 7-7 in the final seconds of normal time. Gaston Revel hit the post with an attempted penalty drop goal for Los Pumas, but Terry Bouhraoua stepped up successfully for France.
South Africa 5-12 New Zealand
Argentina 7-10 France
In the Blitzbokke's quarterfinal with the USA, Ruwellyn Isbell, Cornal Hendricks and Cheslin Kolbe scored the tries to the delight of the home crowd in a 17-7 victory and series leaders New Zealand beat reigning Sevens world champions Wales 35-5 thanks to a hat-trick from Kurt Baker.
France played Argentina in the second semifinal after they recorded respective victory against Portugal.
Los Pumas kicked a last-minute penalty drop goal against the Gold Coast Sevens champions Fiji to win 15-12 and record their first victory against the islanders since May 2010.
Fiji 12-15 Argentina
Portugal 7-10 France
Wales 5-35 New Zealand
South Africa 17-7 United States
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