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LAX SVNS - Dupont helps France break 19-year drought

WRAP: We recap the final day of men’s action at HSBC SVNS Los Angeles as France won their first gold medal on the circuit in almost 20 years.

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That last win had come in Paris back in 2005, and after a long time between drinks, France scored three unanswered tries against Great Britain to etch their name on the LA trophy.

Antoine Dupont was the headline as he joined the squad in Vancouver last week, and since his arrival, the French have won bronze and gold to move up to fourth in the series table.

In the third-place final, Ireland comfortably beat Spain by 24-7 after leading 19-0 at the break.

Elsewhere, fourth-seed New Zealand lost 5-12 to Samoa in the ninth-place play-off to finish tenth, their worst of the season.

Cup Final

France 21 – 0 Great Britain

It was a tough contested opening minutes from both teams as they refused to give away an inch.

The French defense held strong as they managed to scramble back after a break by GB and they force a penalty on the ground.

Play went from one end of the field to the other without score, the French however managed to finally break an unrelenting GB defense as ANTOINE ZEGHDAR powers his way over the line.

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The teams went into break with a (7-0) by France but GB will consider that a good outcome given the fact they suffered even more injuries in the first half despite having only 2 substitutes left from their entire squad of players.

The French managed to recycle the ball quickly as they came back into the 2nd half smelling blood. STEPHEN PAREZ EDO MARTIN scores for the French as they start to dominate.

It was literally and figuratively insult to injury for GB as they suffered a yellow card. France mad e good use of their numerical advantage as THEO FORNER scores a try that secures the game for the French.

Hats off to a to valiant effort by a GB team that have been plagued by injuries over the weekend to put up a fight like that.

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Third-place play-off

Ireland 24 – 7 Spain

The Spanish got the game going with a high hanging kick but their over eagerness saw them give away an early penalty.

The Irish dominated the first half and managed to score a couple of tries through  a ZAC WARD brace and ED KELLY at the end of the half.

A tried looking Spanish attack failed to get through the green wall in front of them.

The Irish one more try in the 2nd half  through CHAY MULLINS while a tired looking Spanish team got a consolation try through EDUARDO LOPEZ.

The Irish took 3rd place comfortably at the end.

Fifth-place play-off

Fiji 21 – 26 Argentina

Argentina got off to flyer as as their money man MARCOS MONETA spots a gap behind the Fijian defensive line and kicks it forward and shows great skill to control the ball and collect to score.

Fiji responded with a try of their own through RERE ROPATE.

The Pumas manage to score another one before the end of the 1st half as AGUSTIN FRAGA goes through. With everything left to play for in the 2nd half these two team went into the break with Argentina leading 14 points to 7.

The Fijians got their offloading game going and PONEPATI LOGANIMASI went over a few moments before NAPOLIONI BOLACA took them in front for the first time.

MATÍAS OSADCZUK showed his strength as he powered his way over the line to level things up on the scoreboard.

The Pumas dig deep to come up with W and it’s MARCOS MONETA who scores the winning try.

 

Seven-place-play-off

Australia 24 – 14 USA

Australia got off to a solid start as they managed to recycle the ball nicely for JAMES TURNER to go over in space.

The Aussies then went on to score a try from a USA mistake as MATTHEW GONZALEZ picks up a loose ball and runs it clear.

JAMES TURNER scored a 2nd try as Australia started to look even more comfortable.

The USA stayed in the fight even after the half time siren sounded and managed to get the speedster PERRY BAKER in space who scored.

Things ended (19-7) after the first half in the Wallabies favour.

JAMES TURNER finished off a hat trick try early in the second half.

The USA responded with a try by MARCUS TUPUOLA but the Australians manage to hang in there at the end.

Cup semifinals

France 26 – 24 Ireland

The Irish got off to a solid start in the first semi-final as Terry Kennedy broke away and then offloaded to JORDAN CONROY who scored but it didn’t take long for the French to respond with a try by ANTOINE DUPONT who has been growing in stature over the weekend with every minute he has played.

It was a tussle from there as both teams threw there everything at each other in this well contested match. It was the French who came out on top after the 1st half as they turned defense into attack and scored at the end of the half through RAYAN REBBADJ  to go in 12-7.

The French picked up where they left off in first half as their Captain PAULIN RIVA goes over early in the 2nd half.

The Irish stayed in the fight with a try by their talisman  TERRY KENNEDY but the French responded in quick succession through a break away try by ANTOINE ZEGHDAR.

The Irish refused to go away and scored a well worked try by ZAC WARD and then a final try by TERRY KENNEDY.

They had to get the conversion to take things to extra time but the kick was missed and the French managed to hang in there to progress to the final.

Spain 7 – 10 Great Britain

The Spanish in the their record 1st ever semi-final looked ever impressive a they have been over course of the weekend.

GB applied a high rush defense system that saw the Spanish under a bit of pressure and struggling to cope with it.

The continued pressure by Great Britain paid off as the Spanish made unforced errors that saw ROBBIE FERGUSSON open the scoring for GB.

The first half ended (0-5) in a tight contested half that was played up to almost 4minutes of extra time.

Great Britain looked a bit more comfortable with ball in hand at the start of the 2nd half as ALEX DAVIS goes over untouched to stretch their lead ever so slightly.

The Spanish missed an opportunity after winning a penalty and then edging closer but their momentum was stopped by a forward pass.

The Spanish who have been struggling to break the GB defensive line manage to do so with 2minutes left on the clock as TOBIAS SAINZ-TRAPAGA goes over.

Spain had perhaps one more opportunity to steal this one from GB after winning a penalty at the death but the GB defense held strong to win this game for them.

Spain 7  v 10 Great Britain
France 26 v 24 Ireland

Ninth-place play-off

Samoa 12 VS 5 New Zealand

A physical showing from both sides were expected and a physical showing was delivered. New Zealand struck first in the first minute, pulling an early lead. As the game unfolded the sides looked evenly matched and Samoa confirmed it by getting their first try with a minute to play in  the first half. Both teams missed their conversion kicks, keeping each side at five points. Neither side gave any quarter in the first half – a solid defensive showing from both sides.

Samoa came out swinging in the second half as they pressured the men in black, while attacking and closing options while on defence. They held onto the ball well, building patiently when in possession and it paid off as they made it over with Alofipo. The conversion was secured as well, which put them in a decent spot. New Zealand suffered a slow death via a chokehold as the clock ticked down. The game ended with Samoa leading by seven points.

Samoa 12 v 5 New Zealand

Eleventh-place play-off

South Africa 28 VS 15 Canada

South Africa start the Eleventh-place play-off game on the right note as Zain Davids powers over the line after the Blitzboks worked it in towards the sticks from the flank. The conversion is secured as well. They go down a man as Letebele gets himself sent to the bin. The man down doesn’t deter them and they manufacture another try, Oosthuizen the Bok to put it down in the area. Canada tried to bring the fight back to South Africa, but were unable to push through the South African defence. They did, however, manage to keep the South Africans out of their try area for the rest of the half.

The Blitzboks add another try to their tally after some swift passes that made Canada fight to keep up. Davids was the final man and he dragged his defender over the line with him as he put it down. Canada responded immediately after the reset kick with Bowman as he got it out wide, taking a chance to go alone and it paid off for him. Both teams added a try a piece to their scoresheets, trading blows in an exciting fashion with some good running rugby. The hooter sounded after Canada’s reset kick and they continued playing, bagging them another try in the extra time. A consolation try for Flesch, but a nice way to end it for the Canadians.

South Africa 28 v 15 Canada

 

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