China conquered by the New Zealand Women's Sevens


James Mortimer     07 Apr 2014     IRB

New Zealand saw fine captain’s knocks from Sarah Goss and Huriana Manuel, scoring the opening tries of the decider and stretching to a 12-0 lead, before Australia’s Emilee Cherry scored the closing try of the first half.

A try to Carla Hohepa was followed by a replying score to the powerful Sharni Williams, but Portia Woodman, the tournament’s leading try scorer, clinched the deciding try in the eighth minute.

It is New Zealand’s second overall win of the 2013/2014 series, and gives them a two-point lead in the standings (76 versus 74) over Australia with just the Netherlands leg to be played on May 16-17.

On Day One the New Zealand Women’s Sevens team defeated Brazil (33-0), China (50-0) and Spain (26-5).

Interim coach Allan Bunting was proud of a savvy New Zealand team

“The girls played well right from the off,” a thrilled Bunting said from China.

“We had a few injuries but we focused on a few tactical things, our tactics played out but ultimately their heart in performance was strong.”

Bunting said that the final seemed to be played at double speed.

“It was all a bit of a blur, we shut down their attack and defended really well,” he said.

“Our girls were pretty patient with the ball, but the Australians kept us honest.”

“It rained all day and was very wet but in the end we trust our skill set and we still try to play with width.”

The team will now turn their attention to recovery and the Netherlands.

“They will get to recover but we will have other returning players pushing for selection on the last leg.”

Portia Woodman claimed an IRB Women’s Sevens World Series record over the weekend, registering 12 tries (60 points) throughout the tournament.