South Africa thrash Shujaa in Sydney 7s opener
What you need to know:
- Shujaa launched their campaign at Sydney from the wrong blocks, losing to continental rivals South Africa 31-5 in their Pool “B” opener on Friday
- Kevin Wekesa scored the sole try for Shujaa against Blitzbokke, who led 21-0 at the break, touching down five tries and three conversions to blow away the Kenyans
- Despite sitting at the top of the Series with 63 points, All Blacks are yet to win a leg in the Series, having finished second in the last two legs of Cape Town and Hamilton respectively
Kenya Sevens pray for a swift reprieve when they face Series leaders New Zealand and Uruguay at Sydney Sevens at the Allianz Stadium on Saturday.
This is after Shujaa launched their campaign at Sydney from the wrong blocks, losing to continental rivals South Africa 31-5 in their Pool “B” opener on Friday.
Shujaa take on All Black Sevens, the 2022/23 World Rugby Sevens Series leaders, at 2.06am on Saturday before wrapping up against Uruguay at 7.27am.
Kevin Wekesa scored the sole try for Shujaa against Blitzbokke, who led 21-0 at the break, touching down five tries and three conversions to blow away the Kenyans.
Shilton van Wyk went for a brace of tries, all in the first half as Shaun Williams, James Murphy and Siviwe Soyizwapi contributed one each. Ricardo Duarttee added the extras.
New Zealand ran in seven tries with debutant Payton Spencer claiming two as All Blacks blew away Uruguay 45-7.
Che Clarke opened the All Blacks account after good work from Ngarohi McGarvey-Black before Spencer used his pace on the outside to score his first World Series try.
The mask-wearing Mateo Vinals stole in for a fine solo try as Uruguay hit back but after that it was one-way traffic.
Further tries from Sam Dickson, Leroy Carter, Brady Rush, Spencer and the ever-dangerous Akuila Rokolisoa rounded off a comfortable victory.
Despite sitting at the top of the Series with 63 points, All Blacks are yet to win a leg in the Series, having finished second in the last two legs of Cape Town and Hamilton respectively.
Kenya went into Sydney Sevens lying 13th in the Series with 16 points, two places into the relegation zone. They are yet to feature in the Main Cup knock-out stages this season.
In Pool “A”, Hong Kong Sevens champions Australia rallied from behind to beat Great Britain 12-7 and get their campaign off to a winning start as Hamilton Sevens champions Argentina stopped Canada 24-19 in the same pool.
After Dietrich Roache used all his evasive skills to score the opening try, the home crowd at the Allianz Stadium was silenced when Robbie Fergusson replied for Great Britain and Tom Emery converted.
Australia trailed 7-5 at the break but a try just after the restart from the electric Henry Paterson was enough to see them home.
Canada threatened to pull off a huge shock result against Argentina, who had won the Hamilton Sevens last week.
Captain Phil Berna scored the first try, after a mix-up at the back of an Argentinian scrum, and while Agustin Fraga pulled one back for Los Pumas Sevens, it was Canada who led at half-time thanks to a second try from Anton Ngongo.
When Canada extended their lead to 19-5 through Brock Webster, a first ever win over Argentina on Australian soil looked to be on the cards.
However, the Pumas dug deep and found the spirit that saw them triumph in Hamilton to come back and win 24-19, Rodrigo Isgro crossing twice in quick succession and Marcos Moneta adding the killer blow right at the death.
In Pool “C”, Samoa beat Ireland 17-12 while United States of America edged out Spain 33-14 as Fiji stopped Tonga 52-7 with France beating Japan 19-17 in Pool “D”.