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Tough second day for New Zealand teams in Perth

Tough second day for New Zealand teams in Perth

All BlacksJanuary 28, 2024

Both New Zealand's HSBC SVNS sides will not have fond memories of the first tournament staged in Perth at the weekend.

New Zealand's Black Ferns Sevens' run of 20 games and three consecutive tournament wins in Australia was ended by the home side in the quarterfinals on Saturday, while the best the All Blacks Sevens can achieve is ninth place.

Australia aims to celebrate its emerging strength in Sevens by winning both titles. The men need to get past Fiji in their semifinal, while the women need to beat the USA in the semifinals to meet the winner of the Great Britain-Canada game.

Australia's second-placed pool finish after their first-day loss to Great Britain brought their prospective clash in Sunday's final two stages earlier. In a game that saw both teams suffer first-half red cards, the home team won 24-14.

It was the first time since the 2015-16 Series that the trans-Tasman rivals had met in the quarterfinals.

The Black Ferns lost Jorja Miller in the first minute for a head-on-head contact with Faith Nathan. Australia then jumped to a 12-0 lead after tries to Nathan and Madison Ashby.

But just before halftime, Australia lost Maddison Levi, who was playing her first game in Perth due to suspension, to a red card for a head-on-head tackle.

The Black Ferns responded with two converted tries to Michaela Blyde soon after the start of the second half.

However, Australia put together two tries, to Charlotte Caslick and Dominique du Toit, to leave New Zealand to meet Canada in the playoff for fifth place.

New Zealand completed its pool games earlier with a 24-7 over the USA. Up 19-0 at halftime after tries to Blyde, Manaia Nuku and Stacey Waaka, they had Waaka score again just after the resumption before the USA scored in the game's late stages.

Needing to beat Fiji to advance, the All Blacks Sevens built a 14-7 lead at halftime. When Fiji was reduced to six from a yellow card, Leroy Carter scored in the second minute and Regan Ware in the fourth.

But Fiji dominated the second half, building on Ponepati Loganimasi's try just before the turn as Terio Temani scored in the 11th minute, and Viwa Naduvalo secured the win in the 15th minute.

They beat Canada 26-21, scoring three tries without an answer in the first half: Fehi Fineanganofo in the second minute, Tim Mikkelson in the fourth, and Leroy Carter a minute later.

Canada stormed into the second half with three tries in three minutes, and with each converted, they led New Zealand by two points. But in the 14th minute, Fineanganofo scored his second to secure the win.

New Zealand, who needed a golden point to beat Samoa in pool play, will meet them again at 4.54 pm on Sunday to play off for ninth place.

The Black Ferns will meet France in their fifth-place play-off at 8.01 pm.

Click HERE for the final day schedule at the HSBC Perth SVNS. 

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