A pair of tries from Kalione Nasoko and Vilimoni Botitu helped Fiji beat USA 29-15 in the Cup final in Cape Town and secure their first HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series victory in South Africa since 2005.
Text, Picture and Video: World Rugby
It was Fiji's first final since 2009 and completed a fantastic weekend — in which they remained unbeaten — by defeating the United States.
Nasoko opened the scoring with a solo run after some excellent Fiji defending, before they were handed two gift tries. First Botitu got between a Madison Hughes pass and was free to run from deep in his own half, and then Perry Baker fumbled a one-handed play for Sevuloni Mocenacagi to capitalise.
Botitu — who won HSBC Player of the Final — exploited a gap after half time and despite Ben Pinkelman’s two tries, Fiji were too far clear. Nasoko’s line break allowed his second and Carlin Isles capped the final with a brilliant run to the corner, but USA finished second for the second consecutive event.
South Africa secure Bronze
There was a repeat of the final match on day one in Cape Town as the hosts South Africa got one back over New Zealand with a 10-5 win to claim third place. It was a breathless affair once again as New Zealand took an early lead through Sione Molia after a one-two with Etene Nanai-Seturo.
South Africa pulled level when Werner Kok went on a blistering diagonal run to find the corner, before taking the lead in the second half. After a number of phases were brilliantly broken down by the All Blacks Sevens’ defence, Selvyn Davids played a step and go before offloading to Dewald Human to touch down the winning try.
England end fifth
England took fifth in Cape Town after their play-off final win against Spain, who themselves recorded their best-ever finish in the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series. Charlton Kerr got his first try of the weekend to open the scoring after a nice offload from Tom Mitchell, before Phil Burgess spotted a huge gap in the defence and was left with a simple run at the posts.
England led by 14 at half time but Spain recovered after the break, Dan Norton’s touch beyond the try line stopping them from getting on the board. Pol Pla eventually gave Spain hope with a run around the outside, but they couldn’t mount the comeback they needed.
Argentina Take Challenge Trophy
Argentina left Cape Town with the Challenge Trophy after beating Samoa 38-14 in the final. They took the lead early in the first half through Lautaro Bazan Velez and Franco Sabato, before Alamanda Motuga’s double levelled things up. Conrado Roura restored the lead before half time and Argentina ran riot in the second half, scoring three more tries. Ignacio Mendy touched down in the corner, Gaston Revol recovered well after a slip and Sabato got his second — his seventh of the weekend — to seal victory.