All Blacks Upset Applecart as Sydney Pools Announced



The HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series Cape Town trophy once again eluded the Blitzbokke this past weekend (16 – 17 Dec). The hosts came in as favourites against an All Blacks team they beat 24 - 12 in the Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens Cup final.

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The New Zealanders brushed off England 17 – 12 to advance to the semi-finals where they met the hosts, South Africa. The Blitzbokke scored first through Phillip Snyman to hand the hosts a 5-0 lead. The visitors were reduced to six men as Joe Ravouvou was sent to the sin bin for a late tackle, but that made no difference as Tim Mikkelson crossed the whitewash, while his team were a man down.

SA’s veteran, Cecil Afrika, dotted down to close the first half at 12 – 7, advantage SA.
After the break, Vilimon Koroi made an incredible 80 metre run from Cecil Afrika’s second half kick-off. Koroi stepped in between Werner Kok and Kwagga Smith and blitzed passed Afrika who had the only chance of catching him. Joe Webber added another try after he picked up a loose ball to take the hosts 19 – 12 up. Tim Agaba had a great chance to score but he couldn’t hang on to a pass with the whitewash in site.

19 – 12 it ended and New Zealand marched on to the final to face Argentina, who they comfortably beat 38 – 14, and claimed their first Cup final win since the 2013/14 season in Australia.

The next stop is on the Sevens Calendar Sydney 26 – 28 January 2018, and South Africa will have another shot at defending their Sydney title.

HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series 2018 – Sydney Pools

Pool A
New Zealand
Fiji
Samoa
Russia
Pool B
Argentina
France
Wales
Kenya
Pool C
South Africa
England
Spain
Papua New G
Pool D
Canada
United States
Australia
Scotland

Current standings after the Dubai and Cape Town legs of the HSBC Men’s World Sevens Series. 

Standings
1
N Zealand
41
2
S Africa
39
3
Fiji
28
4
England
27
5
Argentina
24
6
Australia
21
7
Canada
20
8
France
18
9
Samoa
17
10
Spain
14
11
Kenya
13
12
USA
13
13
Scotland
11
14
Wales
8
15
Uganda
4
16
Russia
2

Top 5 Leading Points Scorers after the Dubai and Cape Town legs.

Top Point Scorers
No
Player
Team
P
1
S Senatla
SA
70
2
J Stannard
AUS
68
3
A Nasilasila
FIJI
67
4
Dan Norton
ENG
60
5
N Hirayama
WAL
57


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