New Zealand were crowned the new champions of
the Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens after a thrilling final
against Samoa on Saturday. The Kiwi side reclaimed the title
they last won in Dubai in 2007 after powering their way to a 24-12
victory over the Samoans.
The New Zealanders had notched up a 10-0
lead by half time thanks to tries from Tomasi Cama and captain DJ
Forbes. Two tries in quick succession early in the second
half, however, saw the Samoans briefly taking the lead. But the
New Zealanders weren't going to let this one get away and came
back with a try, courtesy of Kurt Baker soon afterwards, with
another one from Cama just before full time to seal the win.
"It's great to have won this. I thought we were a bit
underdone coming into this tournament not having played in any
warm-up tournaments like a lot of the other teams had done so I am
really surprised how well the team came together," said a thrilled
New Zealand coach, Gordon Tietjens, afterwards. "We played
some really tough matches so I'm really happy to have come through
and to have won this one."
This victory also marked a return to the top
after a rather disappointing last season where they could only
manage fourth place in the overall IRB Sevens World Series
New Zealand had booked their spot in the final
with an impressive 19-0 victory over Fiji while Samoa defeated
England 28-19 in their Cup semifinal.
A little earlier in
the evening, there was plenty of celebration in the Australian
camp after they got the better of defending champions South Africa
in the Plate final. The Australians were the only side to put
points on the board in that match, claiming a 7-0 victory over the
South Africans who had been relegated to the Plate competition
after losing out to Fiji earlier in the day in the Cup
Wales beat Zimbabwe,
38-7 to take the Bowl while Russia defeated Portugal, 17-14 to
claim the Shield.
Tickets for the 2010 Hong Kong Sevens go on
Sale in January 2010 -
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