Unbeaten opening day in Vancouver for New Zealand sides

GettyImages 1247694432

Both sides posted handsome victories with the Black Ferns thrashing Colombia 60-0 and Great Britain 43-7 while the All Black Sevens whitewashed the USA 52-0 and foiled a stubborn Spain 17-7.

Tyla Nathan-Wong led the Black Ferns out in her 50th tournament for their first game against Colombia and it only took Michaela Blyde 30 seconds to mark the milestone by scoring a try from past halfway. 

There was no respite for Colombia with the Black Ferns sharp, intense and focused. Blyde scored twice more with Portia Woodman-Wickliffe (2), Jazmin Flex-Hotham (2), Sarah Hirini (2), Stacey Fluhler, and Tyla Nathan-Wong also scoring tries. Nathan-Wong added six conversions to end with a personal haul of 17 points in the Black Ferns biggest win of the season.

In their second match, Stacey Fluhler was a standout in the 43-7 trouncing of Great Britain. Fluhler scored a try in the first and last minute as the only blip the Black Ferns suffered on Day One was conceding a try in the third minute to Emma Urin. Jorja Miller continued her bright form with a try. Hirini, fresh from her Sport New Zealand Leadership award, scored a brace with Shray Kaka and Nathan-Wong also dotting down. Nathan-Wong kicked four conversions.

The Black Ferns Sevens, already guaranteed a quarter-final place play Fiji in their last pool match. Fiji has plenty to play for. After losing 24-26 to Great Britain they beat Colombia 42-24.

USA was expected to be a tricky opening for the All Black Sevens but a 52-0 thumping put paid to that theory. Leroy Carter carried on his superlative form from LA by scoring a hat-trick while Ngarohi McGarvey-Black grabbed a double, as the All Blacks Sevens scored four tries in each half. Moses Leo was a hive of activity and scored a try while a clever grubber kick for himself saw Lewis Ormond rewarded. 

Spain has beaten the All Black Sevens in the past and once again they proved to be difficult opponents. Spain defended manfully in the first half and when in possession Miguel Reina scored a shock converted try to put the Spanish up 7-0 at halftime.

New Zealand regrouped and reduced the high error rate of the first spell. Moses Leo cracked the defense in the ninth minute and two minutes later propelled New Zealand ahead. The clincher was scored by Akuila Rokolisoa. 

Rokolisoa and McGarvey-Black have kicked a combined 8 conversions this season.

New Zealand plays Samoa who they were beaten by in LA in their last Pool game.


View all