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Third placing for All Blacks Sevens in Paris

Mike Lee - KLC fotos for World Rugby

Lynn McConnell     11 Jun 2018     Mike Lee - KLC fotos for World Rugby

Having lost to South Africa, the eventual winners, in their quarterfinal New Zealand romped home in the playoff for third place, beating Canada 38-5.

Joe Nareki scored from the kickoff almost and while Canada responded in the second minute, a steady assault saw tries to Sione Molia, Collier, Ravouvou, Bailey Simonsson and Sam Dickson with Akuila Rokolisoa converting four of them.

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In their semifinal against South Africa, New Zealand suffered an immediate setback when failing to take the kickoff. Powering into the New Zealand defence the South Africans created a gap and Werner Kok scored. Determined tackling denied the South Africans any more score in the first half.

Dewald Human scored the first try of the second half and then substitute Ruhan Nel marked his impact by breaking through tackle attempts to score out wide and take South Africa to 17-0.

Jona Nareki showed his skill to get one back for New Zealand but Human struck immediately to replay although Joe Ravouvou posted a consolation try in injury time to make the final score 24-12.

New Zealand's defence put early pressure on the United States. Attacking from the outset, the Americans were unable to penetrate and when they turned the ball over Scott Curry grabbed the dropped ball and scored.

Carlin Isles pulled a try back when given a chance by Salesi Rayasi to go outside him and with his speed he did, but Rayasi replied with his own try after Dylan Collier turned ball over to set up the chance and when Regan Ware stepped his way through just on halftime New Zealand went to the break with a 21-7 lead.
Ware and Rayasi scored one each in the second half for New Zealand to claim a 33-7 win.

In the men's series overall South Africa pipped Fiji to claim the title by two points. Fiji were beaten by England 19-17 in their semifinal, England finishing strongly by denying Fiji the ball through the final stages of their game.

Kurt Baker said New Zealand knew where they stood coming into the tournament and wanted to win in Paris.

But over the season he felt the side had come a long way and he felt they were not far off being able to match the pacesetters South Africa and Fiji.

"Sometimes we're probably our own worst enemies but if we can nail everything and get it all running smoothly, we've proven this year at the Commonwealth Games that we're capable of it, it's just a matter of getting back to that form I suppose," he said.

The effort had been put in and couldn't be faulted but execution was not always what they would have liked, he said.

It would now be a case of going home to recharge the batteries before beginning the preparation for the World Cup, Baker said.

Final placings were:

South Africa 182, Fiji 180, New Zealand 150, Australia 123, England 122, United States 117, Argentina 105, Kenya 104, Canada 76, Samoa 59, Spain 56, Scotland 55, France 53, Wales 49, Ireland 27, Russia 26, Papua New Guinea 6, Uganda 4, Japan 3, Uruguay 2, Korea 1.