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Monday, June 11, 2018

South Africa retain 7s Series crown after dramatic Paris finale

The HSBC World Rugby Seven’s Series title came down to the final match of the final leg as Paris was the setting for a dramatic finale, with South Africa needing a tournament victory to overtake Fiji in the overall series standings. If they lost, Fiji, would be crowned champions.

So despite a near hiccup against Spain in the quarters, the defending champions retained the title, as they beat England 24-14 in a hard-fought final, after earlier beating New Zealand in the semi.

South Africa finished the series on top with 182 points, followed by Fiji who took silver with 180 points and New Zealand in third on 150 points after claiming the bronze medal in Paris with a 38-5 victory over Canada in the third-place play-off.

"We just did the simple stuff and played with smiles on our faces today. It’s an amazing feeling representing such an amazing country and the people back home never stopped believing in us and supporting us," South Africa captain Philip Snyman said.

Fiji missed the chance to secure the title earlier in the day as they were defeated 19-17 by a spirited England team in a breath-taking quarter-final. England captain Tom Mitchell finished off a 26 pass move to score in the dying seconds of the match and bring an end of Fiji’s recent dominance which has seen them win the previous four rounds of the series.

Fiji recovered to beat Ireland 38-5 and USA 28-7 to finish fifth in Paris and put the pressure on South Africa going in to the final but ultimately it was not enough and Fijians were forced to settle for series silver, despite winning five of the ten rounds.

With the series now complete, up next is the Rugby World Cup Sevens, which takes place in San Francisco from 20-22 July, featuring 24 men's and 16 women's teams over three days of action.

Rugby World Cup Sevens promo

credit: world rugby

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