Battle for All Blacks Sevens in Cape Town

World Rugby

Lynn McConnell     10 Dec 2017     World Rugby

As a result of losing their opening game to the United States when held scoreless for a 0-22 loss, they will play England in their quarterfinal with the prospect of playing tournament favourite South Africa in the semifinals if they were to beat England.


New Zealand beat England in a semifinal in last week's Dubai tournament to qualify for the final.

New Zealand were not the only victims of an upset. Fiji were beaten by Canada and as a result drew South Africa in the quarters.

Favourites South Africa beat Russia 40-5, France 31-5 and Kenya 26-7 and in the process Seabelo Senatla scored his 200th series try, in his 35th tournament, the fastest to achieve the milestone.

New Zealand needed to beat Australia in their final pool game to make the quarterfinals. Vilimoni Koroi scored first followed by two tries to Dylan Collier to claim a 21-0 lead by halftime.

However, Australia came back when Simon Kennewell and Lewis Holland scored tries at the start of the half, but the New Zealanders retained their control with Koroi scoring again, along with Sione Molia to finish with a 35-12 win.

Clark Laidlaw said: "We were pretty poor against the USA but we're really happy about the way we bounced back. You can't win the tournament on day one but you can definitely lose it."
In their opening game against the USA, New Zealand ran into the game's fastest man Carlin Isles in full flight as he scored the first two tries of the game.

Spain were on the receiving end in their second game however, as the All Blacks Sevens ran out to a 26-0 lead in the first half with two tries to Tim Mikkelson and Joe Webber and Kurt Baker crossing with Sam Dickson (2), Regan Ware and Vilimoni Koroi joining the scorers list in the second half as New Zealand won 50-0.

England will also be under pressure to produce as coach Simon Amo said, "I don't think we played particularly well but there's a lot of heart shown. The effort and the attitude was excellent, our sevens wasn't as good as it should be."

England beat Uganda 36-0, Argentina 24-7 and Scotland 12-7 to qualify. 

The All Blacks Sevens face England at 11.26pm Sunday NZT. Watch live on Sky Sport channel 57.