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Rugby Sevens: ‘Amazing’ DJ orchestrates All Blacks win in Hong Kong

New Zealand celebrate their eighth title at the Hong Kong Sevens. Photo: IRB / Martin Seras Lima.

Led by captain DJ Forbes (holding trophy) and long-time coach Gordon Tietjens (far right), New Zealand clinched their 11th title at the Hong Kong Sevens. Photo: IRB / Martin Seras Lima.

March 30, 2014: Inspired by an outstanding performance by captain DJ Forbes, New Zealand beat England 26-7 in wet conditions to win the Cathay Pacific / HSBC Hong Kong Sevens in front of 40,000 fans and regain the lead in the HSBC Sevens World Series.

 

In winning the Hong Kong title for the first time since 2011, the All Blacks Sevens opened up a seven-point lead at the top of the series over South Africa, who lost 14-7 to England in the Cup quarters but finished strongly to beat Wales 19-14 in the Plate final.

 

Long-time New Zealand coach Gordon Tietjens singled out Forbes for praise, with the hard-working hooker – a flanker in 15s – proving immense at the breakdown, composed in possession and setting the platform for much of New Zealand’s best moves.

 

“It is a great feeling. My captain led so well from the front. He was simply amazing and also the other players linked in with him. We played a good final,” said Tietjens. “That puts us back on top now. It’s topsy-turvy now, which means we need to start well in Scotland, but this will certainly help in going towards winning that title.”

 

Tim Mikkelson, the 2013 IRB Sevens Player of the Year, is tackled by Dan Bibby.

Tim Mikkelson, the 2013 IRB Sevens Player of the Year, is tackled by Dan Bibby.

New Zealand, who beat Australia 19-7 in the semis, started strongly against England, who also came into the final high on confidence after a comprehensive 17-7 defeat of Fiji, last year’s champions.

 

Ben Lam touched down in the right corner in the fifth minute before the outstanding Tim Mikkelson – the 2013 IRB Sevens Player of the Year – made a break from the halfway line to add a second try in the 10th minute, with scrumhalf Gillies Kaka adding the conversion. England scored just before the break through Tom Powell to lift their supporters and make it 12-7 at half-time.

 

Forbes ensured New Zealand remained in charge when he stayed out wide to receive a long pass on the wing and score early in the second half, as Kaka added the extras to make it 19-7. Even after Lam received a yellow card, the six-man All Blacks managed another try, a Forbes drive down the line resulting in substitute Sam Dickson touching down.

 

Captain DJ Forbes was at his very best as New Zealand produced a masterclass to beat crowd favourites England 26-7 in the Hong Kong Sevens final. Photo: Power Sport Images for HKRFU.

Captain DJ Forbes was at his very best as New Zealand produced a masterclass to beat crowd favourites England 26-7 in the Hong Kong Sevens final. Photo: Power Sport Images for HKRFU.

Source: IRB

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