BlitzBoks win Canada Sevens in Vancouver
DAY TWO WRAP: The Blitzboks claimed a second Canada Sevens tournament win in three years when they totally outplayed Kenya to the tune of 38-5 in the final at BC Place in Vancouver on Sunday.
South Africa were up 24-0 at the break and continued their dominance in the second half.
With this win the South Africans also took the lead in the World Rugby Sevens Series and will be firm favourites to bag the next tournament, to be played in Edmonton next weekend.
The final proved to be a thrilling affair, with Kenya keen on running the ball at the BlitzBoks, only to be knocked back in the tackle time and again. That defensive pressure soon resulted in a try for Angelo Davids, and he added another after intercepting a Kenyan pass. That pushed his try tally to 10 for the tournament, a new record in Vancouver.
The lead was soon extended when Sako Makata rounded off a lovely move before Christie Grobbelaar raced away for his first try in a final. The half-time lead of 24-0 was a good indication of the Blitzboks’ dominance.
The second half saw no drop in standards from the Springbok Sevens side, as they kept up the pressure on Kenya.
Ronald Brown, who was named Player of the Final, scored a delightful try after a delayed pass from Dewald Human, who was soon after sin binned. Kenya did manage to get one try back via Daniel Taabu, but a late Darren Adonis try – also a first for the centre – sealed the dominant win by the BlitzBoks.
Coach Neil Powell said: “It was amazing just to be out there playing again especially in front of a great crowd. It was great to have two African teams in the final and it’s always a fierce encounter with Kenya.
“I’m really proud of the boys, there’s a lot of youngsters who are the next generation of Springboks sevens and they’ve done really well.”
Earlier in the day, South Africa scored 19 unanswered points against Great Britain in the second half of their semifinal in Vancouver to record a 26-12 win.
In their quarterfinal, the Springbok Sevens stormed into the semi-finals with an eight try romp over Spain.
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An incredible journey for Ronald Brown 👏 pic.twitter.com/ZYozbxT4AQ
— World Rugby Sevens (@WorldRugby7s) September 20, 2021
BRONZE FOR GREAT BRITAIN
Great Britain claimed the bronze medal on their Series debut after a 24-14 win against Ireland. The teams had drawn 7-7 in the pool stages but the result of the rematch was never really in doubt after Great Britain raced into a 17-0 lead thanks to tries from Frederick Roddick, Calum Randle and the all-action Paddy Kelly.
Ireland went into the third-place decider missing three of their key players – Mark Roche, Bryan Mollen and Ed Kelly – through injury, but they fought back to score through Liam Turner on the stroke of half-time.
Defending a 17-7 lead, Great Britain managed the game clock effectively while Robbie Fergusson was in the sin-bin for a deliberate knock-on, keeping Ireland at bay during those two minutes. Randle then crossed for a second time before Ireland signed off with a try for Sean Kearns.
For a while, Great Britain would have had designs on gold in Vancouver after they responded to an early Davids try in the semi-final against South Africa with two of their own in quick succession, from Alex Davis and Jamie Farndale, to go 12-7 up.
Dewald Human had been sent to the sin-bin for lifting in the tackle, but once the Blitzboks were back to their full quota of players, the momentum shifted back to them again.
With threats all over the pitch, South Africa had no need to panic and Christie Grobbelaar got them back in it before Zain Davids’ quickfire double saw them pull away to win 26-12.
Kenya cruised through to their sixth Cup final and their second in Vancouver, having finished runners-up to Fiji in 2018, with a convincing 38-5 victory over Ireland.
The warning signs were there for Ireland just 19 seconds in when Willy Ambaka burst through the middle to score under the posts. The rampaging Otieno, the man they call “The Water Buffalo”, helped himself to a hat-trick of tries thereafter, while Daniel Taabu, Levy Amunga and Mark Kwemoi also got on the scoresheet.
Earlier in the quarter-finals, Ireland needed Ben Moxham’s try in sudden-death extra-time to overcome a battling Hong Kong and reach the last four for only the second time in Series history.
The second quarter-final between USA took on Kenya promised much from an attacking point of view, and it delivered. USA twice took the lead but Otieno produced another headline-grabbing performance with two tries as the Shujaa made it through to their first World Series semi-final since Hong Kong in 2018.
Canada’s hopes of bettering last year’s bronze medal finish were ended by a ruthless Great Britain team who ran out 31-5 winners in the third quarter-final. Great Britain’s Scottish contingent – Max McFarland, Fergusson and Jamie Farndale – scored the first three tries, while Welshman Morgan Williams continued the Celtic theme with the fourth. England’s Davis rounded off a 31-5 win for the Rio 2016 Olympic silver medallists.
Source: World Rugby & SA Rugby