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Clean sweep for All Blacks Sevens in Dubai

World Rugby

Lynn McConnell     02 Dec 2017     World Rugby

They joined South Africa, England and Fiji as unbeaten sides who advanced to the quarter-finals. New Zealand will play Kenya on Saturday at 8.44pm.

Captain Scott Curry said at the end of the day that he was 'really happy' with the three wins but there were still things they could improve on.

"As a team we're probably only operating about 50 percent so it's exciting for us.

"I think our attack went really well when we had the ball. But what we need to work on is getting possession – kick-offs, turnovers, stuff like that," he said.

Looking to the quarterfinals it would be all about effort.

"The boys showed that in the first three games. In the first two games we were down at halftime so we had to fight really hard and even the USA pushed us really hard in the second half. We'll take a lot out of that," he said.

It was a mixed day for the New Zealanders. They opened strongly with a 24-12 win over Samoa. Regan Ware scored the All Blacks' first try to level the scores before Alatasi Tupou scored and converted to see Samoa take a 12-5 lead to the break.

DJ Collier scored at the start of the second half but the loss of Tila Mealoi to a yellow card allowed Curry to score almost immediately for the All Blacks to claim the lead for the first time in the game. Then Sione Molia put the issue beyond doubt when scoring the side's fourth try.

But in their second game, against Argentina they had to come from behind before scraping through with a 21-19 win. It didn't help when losing Vilimone Koroi in the third minute to a yellow card.

By the eight minute mark Argentina had scored two converted tries but in the 10th minute Koroi scored with Andrew Knewstubb's conversion pulling the margin, at halftime, back to 7-14.

However, the start of the second half saw Joe Webber get a yellow card and soon after Argentina scored. In a repeat of Koroi's first half effort, Webber scored soon after his return and it wasn't until just before halftime that Molia scored to level the scores at 19-19 with Isaac Te Tamaki landing the match-winning conversion.

In the final game, against the United States, Molia scored in the second and seventh minutes to take a 12-5 lead into the break. The USA scored first in the second half to level the scores but an 11th minute try to Joe Ravouvou gave the All Blacks an advantage they didn't let slip. Two minutes later Ware scored and the USA were unable to respond for New Zealand to claim a 22-12 win.

Competition favourites South Africa beat Uganda 19-10, Kenya 48-5 and Canada 28-0.