New Zealand defeat Australia to claim London Sevens title
May 11, 2014
The victorious New Zealanders perform a Haka in front of the two trophies © Getty Images
New Zealand defeated old foes Australia to claim their IRB World Series title with a stylish London Sevens win at Twickenham.
Australia, who had earlier dispatched England in the semi-finals, were fastest out of the blocks and went ahead 21-0 early in the first half. But the All Blacks came back to claim a 52-33 victory, meaning it was heartbreak for Australia head coach Mick O'Connor in his last game in charge of the side.
The win makes it a 12th Sevens World Series for New Zealand, a feat that All Blacks captain DJ Forbes said was built on hard work: "Close to a 100 points in a final, that was a spectacle and to come back down from 21-0 to win is pretty special. People see all the flash stuff on the pitch but there's a lot of hard work behind the scenes. It's good to finish off the series with a bang."
England went down at the semi-final stage in a narrow 15-12 defeat by Australia, who scored three tries to secure their place in the final. New Zealand had to overcome Fiji in their semi-final and managed to sneak through with a tight 12-10 win.
England went on to defeat Fiji in the third place play-off, running out 26-19 winners. Tries from James Rodwell, Howard Packman, Mat Turner and captain Tom Mitchell secured the win for the hosts, although two quick tries from Fiji late on made the final score closer than it could have been.
Earlier South Africa defeated Kenya to take the consolation plate final, comfortably dispatching their African rivals 38-7. Canada beat Argentina 24-14 to win the bowl final, while the USA overcame Japan 36-12 to take the shield.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Huw Richards assesses where Wales are after a mixed Six Nations, with front row seats still very much available for the World Cup
John Mitchell lapped up the action on 'Sensational Saturday' - but warns not to expect a repeat come Rugby World Cup time later this year
Craig Dowd warns England, Ireland and Wales they should play to their strengths rather than those of the All Blacks and the Wallabies
Tom Hamilton runs the rule over just where the six countries stand ahead of the global gathering in September