January 26, 2014 (ISN) – South Africa defended their USA Sevens title in style in Las Vegas, winning a thrilling Cup final 14-7 against reigning Series champions, New Zealand.
In winning a second successive tournament title this season, South Africa assume a one-point lead over New Zealand in the HSBC Sevens World Series standings. They also extend their winning streak against the kiwis to five matches, stretching back to December 2012.
Scott Curry gave New Zealand the lead in a bruising final at the Sam Boyd Stadium, but tries by Branco du Preez and Werner Kok were enough to seal the South Africans’ title defence.
Canada lost their Cup semi-final against the New Zealanders but performed more heroics to beat Samoa and finish third, Phil Mack’s penalty drop goal at the death sealing that win.
England finished with a win against Australia to take the Plate, Fiji rounded off the weekend in more convincing fashion to beat Kenya to the Bowl and the hosts USA overcame Spain to claim the Shield.
Pool draw made for round 5 in Wellington
The IRB has confirmed the pool draw for round 5 of the HSBC Sevens World Series in New Zealand’s capital Wellington on 7-8 February.
After their thrilling Cup win at the Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas, South Africa lead the HSBC Sevens World Series by a single point from New Zealand and also head Pool A in Wellington, lining up against the defending champions England, Wales and Portugal.
Las Vegas runners-up New Zealand face Fiji in pool play for the second tournament in succession, as well as European duo France and Spain.
After their heroics in finishing third at the Sam Boyd Stadium, Canada head Pool C in Wellington and have drawn Argentina, Scotland and North American rivals USA.
Samoa head Pool D and face three tough matches against Australia, Kenya and regional qualifiers for the New Zealand event, Tonga.