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Rugby: Fiji, South Africa lead charge into Hong Kong Sevens quarters

Fiji’s Savenaca Rawaca against Canada at the Hong Kong Sevens. Photos: World Rugby/Martin Seras Lima.

Fiji’s Savenaca Rawaca against Canada at the Hong Kong Sevens. Photos: World Rugby/Martin Seras Lima.

March 28, 2015: HSBC Sevens World Series leaders South Africa and Fiji were the only sides to maintain 100 per cent records during pool play as they booked their places in the Cup quarter-finals at the Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens, the circuit’s sixth leg.

 

Seeking a first Hong Kong title, the ‘Blitzboks’ produced a confident day two performance, with Seabelo Senatla picking up a hat-trick as they defeated France 29-7 after earlier accounting for Japan 27-0.

 

Neil Powell’s side will face Australia in the quarter finals while Fiji, who beat Belgium 38-7 and Canada 45-0 on day two, await England.

 

The USA and England, both having already qualified for the quarters, played out a highly entertaining draw in their final Pool D match. Maka Unafe and Jeff Williams picked up doubles for their respective sides, but Mike Friday’s men topped the pool on points differential and meet Samoa.

 

Rieko Ioane, 18, picked up a brace in New Zealand's 14-5 win over Australia in their final pool match.

Rieko Ioane, 18, scored two tries in New Zealand’s 14-5 win over Australia in their final pool match.

New Zealand fought back from their earlier setback, a surprise 24-24 draw with Portugal, to win 14-5 over Australia to top Pool B following two tries from 18-year-old Rieko Ioane and will face Los Pumas on Sunday.

 

Earlier the HKRFU’s ‘Magnificent Seven’ – Jonny Zhang, Christian Cullen, Eric Rush, Jonah Lomu, David Campese, Waisale Serevi and Ben Gollings – were introduced and the Village People entertained a 39,098 strong crowd.

 

Lomu, who helped New Zealand win the Cup three times in the mid-1990s, said: “I enjoyed everything about Hong Kong – the atmosphere, the characters and the camaraderie which is unique about rugby.

 

“This is where it all starts for a lot of players. Titch has done a great job for New Zealand Sevens and this is where it begins for many. For my career, if it wasn’t for Sevens, I wouldn’t have had half the career I had.”

 

Source: World Rugby (www.worldrugby.org); Editing by SportAsia

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