Dubai Sevens results: New Zealand face USA in final – South China Morning Post
New Zealand and the USA will battle it out for the first silverware of the new HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series in the final of the Dubai Sevens.
The All Blacks Sevens ground out a 7-5 win over England in Saturday’s first semi-final, reaching their 10th Dubai decider.
The USA then edged a thrilling game against Australia 22-17, with Danny Barrett crossing more than two minutes after the hooter when the scores had been tied up. It will be the Eagles’ first final in Dubai.
“Australia are a quality outfit, man,” Barrett said. “They really put it to us. Our speed, our work ethic, our endeavour all day today from the quarter-finals to the semi-finals has shown through for us. It’s amazing what we’ve been able to do.
“We lost five games here last year. I mean come on, how good is that? We’ve been working for this for a long time now.
“To come off a home World Cup and not finish the way we want to, it’s a second chance to get out there and give it a go. We want to try to finish top four and give ourselves a little break at the end of the year.”
Two-time world player of the year Perry Baker had turned on the gas to burn off John Porch – who’s no slouch himself – and break the deadlock against Australia with his sixth try of the weekend.
The Eagles stormed into a 12-0 lead from the restart thanks to Matai Leuta, but Lachie Anderson’s quick try was the perfect response.
There was just enough time for the restart and Porch burst straight through a gap in the middle under the posts, converting his own try to level it up at 12-12.
The USA hit back though with Stephen Tomasin touching down his 50th World Series try to level it up again at 17-17. Barrett was then the hero, eventually crossing in the left corner after a chaotic finish, with the USA dummying at a penalty and feeding the ball out wide.
Earlier, Andrew Knewstubb has converted Tone Ng Shiu’s try late in the first half for New Zealand against England, but Tom Bowen broke free to run half the length of the field and cut the deficit to 7-5 soon after the restart.
Harry Glover thought he had put England ahead in the left corner only for his effort to be ruled out after he was adjudged to have stepped out of bounds.
After several more minutes of intense attacking pressure, including two and a half more after the buzzer, New Zealand’s incredible defence was rewarded with Scott Gregory exerting himself on the breakdown and winning a penalty.
Fiji and South Africa will contest the fifth-place final. Gareth Baber’s men saw off Argentina 31-21, after the Blitzboks had dispatched Scotland 29-0.
Earlier, Samoa set up a Challenge Trophy final against France. Samoa beat Spain 26-22, and France beat Canada 28-12.
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