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Las Vegas Sevens: Day one wrap

Sean Willis

Photo Credit: Life Actually Photography     04 Mar 2017     Sean Willis

Taking on Brazil early in the day, the Black Ferns Sevens cruised to a 24-0 win with two tries in either half completing the comfortable victory. Portia Woodman showed her danger early with an impressive effort down the touchline while Tyla Nathan-Wong fooled the defence with some fancy footwork. Not to be outdone, Michaela Blyde continued her prolific try-scoring form on the circuit with two quick tries in the second half to secure the win.

The second match of the day produced a remarkable late surge from the Black Ferns Sevens to defeat England 27-5. With the game in the balance at 10-5 late in the first half, the Black Ferns Sevens increased the tempo with tries to 18-year-old Alena Saili, Kelly Brazier and Michaela Blyde to shut England out of the match.

The victory set up a showdown against the other unbeaten team in the pool – Australia. The Black Ferns Sevens-Australia clash also marked the first time the teams had ever met in pool play.

After a tense opening five minutes where neither team gained the ascendency, Portia Woodman showed her world class by crossing for a brace of tries late in the first half. Australia quickly answered back with two of their own to set up a grandstand finish at 14-14.

It took a bit of luck for New Zealand to get the match winner when a grubber off a fumbled pass led to Michaela Blyde scoring her fourth try of the day. Tyla Nathan-Wong duly slotted her third conversion of the game to secure the 21-14 win for New Zealand.

The Black Ferns Sevens now face Russia in the quarterfinals while Australia square off with Fiji. Hosts USA have drawn Ireland in the quarterfinal stage while Canada and France will playoff.
The All Blacks Sevens had just two games on day one with the men’s draw in Las Vegas being played over three days.

They started with a 24-7 victory over Kenya. The tries were shared around with Tim Mikkelson, Sherwin Stowers, Dylan Collier and Sione Molia all crossing the chalk.

Next up they face Russia at 5.14pm NZT (story to be updated). Tomorrow the All Blacks Sevens face Argentina at 11.36am NZT in their final pool match.

Watch Las Vegas Sevens on SKY Sport

Day 2: Sunday 5 March from 10.20am on SKY Sport 6
Day 3: Monday 6 March from 8.15am on SKY Sport 5