Aussie 7s Bow out of Cup Race in Quarter Final Showdown against New Zealand

by Rugby Australia

The Qantas Australian Men’s Sevens squad has gone done in the quarter finals to New Zealand (17-24) in their home tournament on day two of the HSBC Hamilton Sevens on Sunday.

Australia ultimately fell to Scotland in the battle for fifth place, leaving Australia to take seventh position for round three of the HSBC Sevens World Series.

Qantas Australian Men’s Sevens Head Coach Tim Walsh said: “We’re disappointed with how day two went down today and we can’t bury our heads in the sand and just accept average performances.

“We know where we went wrong, and we know how to solve it. This tournament was a reversal of the Cape Town in terms of key areas.

“Our defence and restart possession were very good, but our attack lacked decisiveness and support. There is minimal room for error in the game and if you can’t consistently be a jack of all trades and a master of some you get found out very quickly.

“We’re looking forward to getting into our recovery and reviews and playing at our home tournament, the HSBC Sydney 7s next weekend.”   

The Aussie 7s played without flier Ben O’Donnell on day two who sustained a minor knee injury.

Australia 17 was defeated by New Zealand 24
The match was a see-sawing battle as neither team refused to give an inch in the opening exchanges. New Zealand maintained possession well but a committed defence from the men in gold held the line for 5 minutes before New Zealand could cross and take a 0-7 lead. Jona Nareki went over for New Zealand’s second to extend the lead of the home side 0-10. New Zealand continued to hammer the Aussie defence and crossed for their third try just before half time to move the scoreboard to 0-17.

The Aussie 7s were the first to strike in the second half, with a break from Maurice Longbottom putting Simon Kennewell over in the corner. Australia continued to ask questions of New Zealand but were unable close the gap with both sides scoring a try each. The Aussie 7s refused to die wondering scoring off the final play to go down in the quarter final 17-24.

Australia 14 was defeated by Scotland 24
The Aussie 7s started the match well with Lachlan Anderson opening the account for the men in gold in second minute with a well worked try near the posts to take a 7-0 lead. The first half became a arm wrestle as both teams looked to created space out wide. Scotland pressured Australia in defence and were eventually rewarded with a try on the cusp of half time to level the scores at 7-7.

Scotland shot out of the blocks in the second half scoring two quick tries in succession that moved the score to 7-19. The Aussie7s chased hard for options and were rewarded when Maurice Longbottom held the ball brilliantly to cross the line and narrow the gap to 14-19. A late try to Scotland sealed Australia’s fate leaving the final score at 14-24.