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Blitzboks win Dubai Sevens tournament

03 December, 2017, 01:47 | Author: Christina Hansen
  • Tom Kirkwood  SPORTDXB 
 
   Michaela Blyde in action for New Zealand against the United States

The South African team won each of their pool matches yesterday to set up a quarter-final match against Samoa at The Sevens Stadium.

South Africa successfully defended their Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens title after beating New Zealand 24-12 in the opening round of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series 2018.

After a yellow card in the first minute to New Zealand's Joseava Rovouvou, the Blitzboks took full advantage of the extra man, running in three tries in as many minutes through Philip Snyman, Seabelo Senatla and Kwagga Smith with Branco du Preez adding two conversions for a 19-0 lead at half-time.

Sluggish start for Blitzboks in World Seven Series

Fiji reduced the arrears to 12-7 when Jerry Tuwai went over for a try, but South Africa held on to reach the final.

"We kind of let them back into the game and a silly yellow card and one or two silly mistakes towards the end nearly cost us", Snyman said after the final.

The US went on to beat Russian Federation 21-12 in the semi-finals, but were comprehensively outplayed 34-0 by Olympic gold medallists Australia in the final.

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But a dominant first half for France had England on the backfoot in their second outing, though Norton dashed the length of the field to wrestle back the advantage come the end of the first period.

"We're also really pleased with some of the young guys who played today like Harry Glover who was fantastic and showed some great glimpses as well as Ben Howard who made his World Series debut today - we saw some really good stuff from him".

"We aren't focused on the result‚ we are focused on the processes and our aim is to leave the pitch happy knowing we did all we can‚ even if the result doesn't go our way".

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Sampaoli also said he considers Croatia the toughest opponent, adding: " Croatia has an excellent midfield line with Luka Modric, Ivan Rakitic and Ivan Perisic.

Tom Bowen starred for England by scoring a brace of tries in the match.

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