NZ win 2011 HK 7s
28 March, 2011
|Osea Kolinisau in action in Hong Kong. |
New Zealand beat closest rivals England 29-17 to win the Cathay Pacific/ Credit Suisse Hong Kong Sevens and take a five-point lead in the World Series race.
New Zealand scored first in the final and, although they only led by one score at the break, in the second half they never looked like letting England in and stretched away, inspired by the brilliant Tomasi Cama.
The Fijian-born playmaker was at his inspirational best and played a part in Frank Halai's crucial score before the break, as well as adding one of his own in the second half as New Zealand built an insurmountable lead.
After the first five events in the World Series, New Zealand now lead with 110 points, five clear of England on 105. Fiji and Samoa lie joint-third on 84 with Plate winners South Africa on 72.
Earlier, England and New Zealand beat Pacific giants Samoa and Fiji respectively in the semi finals to reach the Cup final with the winner receiving 30 Series points and the runner-up taking 25.
Chris Cracknell's try proved decisive in England's semi final having trailed 14-12 with less than a minute on the clock remaining whilst New Zealand beat Fiji by the same score.
Despite a second half comeback from the Pacific Islanders Gordon Tietjens' side were able hold on after Lote Raikabula and two Tim Mikkelson tries had given the 2010 Commonwealth Games gold medal winners a 19-0 lead at half time.
Earlier New Zealand proved too strong for Portugal in the first quarter final winning 33-5, England beat Russia 10-7, Samoa defeated Australia 15-12 and Fiji avenged the USA Sevens Cup final loss to South Africa running out eventual 24-19 winners despite the best efforts of Cecil Afrika.
The current Series leading points scorer was everywhere, making two try saving tackles, scoring South Africa's first try and kicking the decisvie conversion to send the match into sudden death extra time. But eventually it was Fiji who progressed, David Batiratu scoring the crucial points. USA champs South Africa win Plate
South Africa won the Plate and collected 16 Series points after beating Australia 26-19 in a pulsating final. Hamish Angus scored twice for Michael O'Connor's Australia but two from Sibusiso Sithole and one each from Cecil Afrika and Branco du Preez clinched the victory for the 2011 USA Sevens Cup winners.
Earlier they beat Portugal 28-5 to reach the Plate final with Chris Dry, captain Kyle Brown, Afrika and Neil Powell all scoring for Paul Treus side. Australia reachedthe final after a 32-12 against Russia in the second semi final.
Vladimir Ostroushko, scoring his sixth try of the tournament, had given Russia a 5-0 lead, but five tries, all converted by Hamish Angus, ensured Australia reached the final, before Ostroushko added his second of the match. Canada claim five Series points in Bowl
Canada defeated Japan 33-12 in the Bowl final to win five Series points, their first this season. Sean Duke scored two of Canada's five tries and it was a fitting end for a side who beat Argentina on day one and narrowly lost to Australia by two points on day two.
Earlier they had beaten Wales 27-14 in the semi final with John Moonlight scoring twice whilst Japan dramatically beat USA to reach the final on day three of the 2011 Hong Kong Sevens.
Justin Boyd and captain Matt Hawkins had given USA a 12-0 lead at half time but two converted tries from Lote Tuqiri and Katsuyuki Sakai ensured Japan reached the final.
In the quarter finals Canada edged past France 12-7, Japan beat core side Scotland 19-14, USA left it late to beat Tonga 26-21 in sudden death extra time and Wales won 29-14 against Argentina in a repeat of the 2009 RWC Sevens final. More silverware for Kenya in Shield
Kenya won the Shield final 17-12 in sudden death extra time against Spain. Martin Heredia had attempted to kick a penalty in the second minute of extra time but it was Sidney Ashioya who scored the decisve try for Benjamin Ayimba's team. The two sides beat China 24-5 and Zimbabwe 17-14 respectively in the semi finals.
Earlier Kenya secured a win against Malaysia 59-7 with two tries each from Collins Injera and Leon Adongo in the quarter finals and China broke the hosts' hearts with a 35-26 victory, Cao Zhiwen scoring with the last play of the match.
Zimbabwe defeated Korea 28-12 and Spain beat Mexico 26-5 in the other two quarter finals. Article courtesy of irbsevens.com.