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Rugby, Australian Football: Kiwis are sevens kings

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posted on Jun, 6 2004 @ 11:17 AM
New Zealand were crowned IRB World Sevens Series champions when they reached the semi-finals of the London Sevens at Twickenham.

A 36-7 quarter-final victory against Scotland gave the Kiwis an unassailable lead in the series and meant England will finish in second place even if they win the final tournament of the season. Waikato number eight Liam Messam scored twice with the other tries coming from Ma'a Nonu, Chris Masoe and Anthony Tuitavake.

The win handed them a fifth successive title and a place in the semi-finals against Argentina, who beat Samoa 20-0. England cruised into the semi-finals with their 14-5 win against Australia. They trailed early on to a Tim Aistrope try but scores from Harlequins flanker Pat Sanderson and Penzance wing Rob Thirlby - both converted by Newcastle's Ben Gollings - saw coach Mike Friday's side safely through.

They now face Fiji, who pulled off the comeback of the tournament after trailing 17-0 against South Africa to win 19-17 after Niko Aisake scored with the last play of the game. England, though, were forced to go into the second day of the Emirates Airlines London tournament without prolific try-scorer Ugo Monye.

The Harlequins wing damaged a hamstring in yesterday's opening game and now faces a race to be fit for this summer's Under-21 World Cup.

Story source Sportinglife


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