sábado, dezembro 09, 2006

Wales and Tunisia make George quarters

After the excitement and drama of Dubai last weekend, where South Africa opened up an early four-point lead over New Zealand in the Series, the Boks again look the team to beat in George at the Emirates Airline South Africa Sevens. Day one has seen more upsets and thrilling Sevens rugby, with Wales and Tunisia both joining the top four seeds in the Cup quarter finals.


Pool A

Top seeds Fiji head Pool A after they rounded off the day with victory over Samoa but they had to be at their very best against Canada early on - forward Sireli Naqelevuki instrumental in a tough 22-14 win - before cruising to a more straight forward 47-7 against the impressive Zimbabweans.

Samoa opened up with a 28-12 win over Zimbabwe, captain Lolo Lui again impressive, before seeing off the vastly improved Canadians 31-10 to ensure their Cup quarter final place. The Canadians beat Zimbabwe 19-0.

Pool B

Pool B was tight from the very start with England eventually topping the group from Wales. Tal Selley's try on his return to the Welsh squad helped them to come back from 14-0 down and draw the opening match against England. The Welsh then beat Argentina and the gutsy Portuguese to book their place in the Cup quarter finals. England recovered from the early draw to beat Portugal, new cap Charlie Amesbury among the tries in a 58-5 win, and the Pumas also won against the Portuguese to set up an intriguing final match where a win would have put either England or Argentina through. England sealed an easy win to top the group.

Pool C

Hosts South Africa dominated pool C from the outset with Player of the Tournament in Dubai Stefan Basson again outstanding. Paul Treu's men opened up with a 45-7 win over Kenya and then beat Uganda 57-0 with a near faultless display and France in the driving rain.

France started with a 22-7 win over Uganda but had to work far harder against Kenya, coming from 12-7 down to beat the Kenyans 22-19, Marc Giraud and Bogdan Leonte with the decisive scores before Horace Otieno's consolation.

Pool D

New Zealand kept up their good form in Dubai and out-performed all of their opponents in Pool D's opening matches, easily dispatching Scotland and Tunisia before holding off another late day one rally from trans-tasman rivals Australia.

Tunisia it is, though, who join them in the Cup quarter finals after they beat Australia 21-12 to provide George with its first upset, and then Scotland 33-14. Australia earlier beat Scotland.

Cup quarter final line-up
Fiji v Wales
England v Samoa
South Africa v Tunisia
New Zealand v France

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