Argentina stun New Zealand in Hamilton
SEVENS WRAP: Argentina secured World Rugby Sevens Series gold on a dramatic day two in Hamilton.
Day one on Saturday had been brilliant, but day two surpassed that with some amazing action.
Argentina came back from 0-12 down to win the men’s Cup final 14-12.
USA took bronze, but it was all about Argentina and Gaston Revol said: “This is just amazing, we have worked so hard for this.
“To beat New Zealand in New Zealand is the ultimate and the team never knew when they were beaten, everyone put in a lot of effort.”
Player of the Final Rodrigo Isgro said: “This team just works so hard, what a feeling.”
New Zealand now lead the World Rugby Sevens Series standings on 63 points with USA second on 61 points and Argentina third on 59 points.
Argentina fought back from 0-12 down to win this breathless Cup final.
In the first half, New Zealand had to deal with a yellow card for Joe Webber, but they took the lead when down to six men.
Akuila Rokolisoa was the try scorer that time and, when back to seven, Roderick Solo scored a second try just before half-time. Rokolisoa converted and it was 12-0 at the interval.
The second half belonged to Argentina though and tries from Santiago Alvarez and Marcos Moneta – converted by Santiago Vera Feld and Tobias Wade respectively – put them 14-12 up.
There was then late, late drama as Brady Rush had a try effort disallowed for New Zealand, but Argentina did it.
For Argentina, this gold is their first medal of this current circuit and should give them momentum for the coming months.
New Zealand now have a bronze and two silvers from four events.
France were 14-10 up over USA heading into the final minutes of the bronze final, but it was the latter who managed to medal after a winning five-pointer from Ben Broselle.
Theo Forner and William Iraguha scored converted tries for France, but Aaron Cummings, David Still and Broselle did the job for the Americans as they edged it 15-14.
It was the USA’s second bronze in four events, backing up their third place in Cape Town last time out.
Cup qaurters and semis
In the first Cup quarter-final, France caused a shock to defeat Dubai champions South Africa 22-17.
Jonathan Laugel led the way for the French in that one with a try double and, next up, Argentina defeated Fiji 19-10.
Agustin Fraga, Luciano Gonzalez and Marcos Moneta were Argentina try scorers with Santiago Vera Feld kicking two conversions.
Malacchi Esdale, Steve Tomasin, David Still and Perry Baker all scored converted tries for USA in quarter-final number three to get the better of Australia 28-14.
New Zealand and Ireland then played out a cracker.
Aaron O’Sullivan’s five-pointer after a minute had the Irish ahead, but Sam Dickson’s unconverted effort made it 5-5 at the break.
After a scoreless six minutes or so after the interval, Brady Rush then popped up with a crucial five-pointer to see New Zealand through.
New Zealand had no such issues in the first semi-final, Leroy Carter (2), Regan Ware, Akuila Rokolisoa (2) and Roderick Solo as their try scorers as they swept past France 38-0.
Semi-final number two was closer, but Argentina had too much for USA and won 24-14.
Gonzalez, Moneta, Santiago Alvarez and Matías Osadczuk scored their tries in a 24-14 victory.
New Zealand 12-14 Argentina
Third place final
USA 15-14 France
Ireland 17-26 Australia
Kenya 5-26 Samoa
Canada 14-24 Spain
France 0-38 New Zealand
Argentina 24-14 USA
Fifth place semifinals
Fiji 19-26 Australia
South Africa 14-21 Ireland
Ninth place semifinals
Samoa 24-14 Great Britain
Kenya 33-19 Tonga
Thirteenth place semifinals
Spain 21-17 Japan
Canada 21-17 Uruguay
Fiji 10-19 Argentina
USA 28-14 Australia
South Africa 17-22 France
Ninth place quarterfinals
Tonga 12-7 Uruguay
Japan 12-24 Great Britain
Samoan 24-21 Spain
Canada 5-21 Kenya