NZ win and Aussies lose day one in Hong Kong
ESPN staff and wires
March 23, 2013
Fans soak up the action on day one at the Hong Kong Sevens © Getty Images
New Zealand face Kenya and the United States, while Australia will take on South Africa and Argentina in second day action at the Hong Kong Sevens on Saturday.
In their opening game New Zealand beat France 33-12, but Australia came up short and suffered a 19-14 loss to Wales. Lewis Holland scored both tries for Australia, and James Stannard coverted both, however it wasn't enough and Wales held on to set themselves up nicely for day two where they will face Argentina and South Africa.
The French opened the scoring against New Zealand when Paul Albaladejo touched down but the Kiwis worked their way down field for Ben Lam and Lote Raikabula to score tries with Gillies Kaka adding the conversions to give New Zealand a 14-5 half-time lead.
Albaladejo repeated his first half effort by opening the second half scoring with a try and a conversion but that merely lifted the New Zealanders and Tim Mikkelson and Belgium Tuatagaloa scored, the latter almost immediately coming on as a substitute.
Kaka scored the final try and added the conversion.
Gordon Tietjens said: "France played pretty well, they came out firing just after half-time and scored a couple of good tries.
"Everyone lifts their game here, and they were very tough to beat.
"We look at DJ Forbes, Lote Raikabula and Tim Mikkelson, and we will need that experience here," he said.
It was an opening night of upsets as Argentina beat South Africa 21-0. Samoa thrashed England 28-7 while Wales beat Australia 19-14 and Portugal rounded out the upsets with a 27-21 win over Scotland.
© ESPN and Sportal
Firdose Moonda looks at the moves towards greater integration within South African rugby ... and what the future holds
Martin Gillingham looks ahead to what he believes is the most remarkable ever climax to the league phase of the Top 14
With just two rounds left in the regular season, we look at the prospects of the teams taking part in the Championship play-offs
Joe Simpson talks to Charlie Morgan about loss, Wasps and being England's game-breaker