NZ, Fiji and SA all 100% records heading into last eight
France booked their place in the Cup quarter-finals on home soil after 24-12 and 26-14 victories over the USA and Argentina respectively on day two of the HSBC Paris Sevens.
Captain Terry Bouhraoua and Stephen Parez scored in both matches as the hosts picked up where they left off on day one to the delight of the home crowd, and set up a quarter-final with Singapore champions Kenya at Stade Jean Bouin on day three.
Les Bleus’ match with the USA was a rematch of the rugby final at the Olympic Games in Paris, a match won by the USA the last time rugby was in the Games, with rugby returning to the Games after a 92-year absence later this year in Rio.
“Apart of the last three minutes of the match against Argentina, the overall content of the first two days is good for us,” said France head coach Frederic Pomarel. “We are satisified, except for those three minutes, but that’s not too bad because it gives a little hit on everyone’s bottom for tomorrow.”
“There was a lot of concentration and application from the players, and we now must stay focused on our goal which is playing six matches in the tournament. I knew the team was able to do what they did, I also know that for the first time in the season I’ve got the full team on the field.
“We want to keep the continuity now and whether we win or not, I want them to put the same commitment and the same seriousness until the end.”
Kenya finished runners-up to New Zealand in Pool A, with Sir Gordon Tietjens’ side beating the Africans 19-17 despite trailing 17-7. Tries from Rieko Ioane and Gillies Kaka, with the latter scoring the match-winning try from a quickly taken tap penaty with the clock in the red, helped the All Blacks Sevens to victory and they will face Argentina in the first quarter-final.
Two tries from Waisea Nayacalevu helped Fiji to a 42-5 win over Samoa in the Pool D decider after Josua Tuisova scored his fifth try of the tournament, the Toulon star bumping off Ed Fidow, no mean feat in itself, before running through another tackle to get the series leaders off to a flyer. Earlier they beat Wales 33-14 with Tuisova scoring two tries and they will face Australia in the last eight.
Having scored four tries in South Africa’s win over England on day one, Seabelo Senatla scored two, including his 150th career try, in their win over Brazil before adding his seventh and eighth of the tournament in the Blitzboks’ 31-0 defeat of Australia. Rosko Specman also scored twice in the win, a result that means they missed the possibility of meeting Fiji in the quarter-finals and instead play Samoa.France will play Singapore champions Kenya in QFs