England win London Sevens

England came back from 19-0 down to beat New Zealand 31-26 in extra time of the London Sevens final on Sunday and postpone South Africa winning its first sevens rugby world series crown.

 

South Africa would have earned the series championship if England had lost the final at Twickenham, but England rallied in a thrilling final to win its home event for the first time since 2004 and put off South Africa’s anticipated party until the last tournament of the season next weekend, the Edinburgh Sevens at Murrayfield.

 

South Africa, with a 20-point lead over nearest rival England in the standings, need only reach the quarterfinals at Edinburgh to win the series.

 

“The title is South Africa’s but at least we’ve taken them to the last week,” England coach Ben Ryan said.

 

New Zealand, the two-time defending series champion which hasn’t won a tournament this season, rushed to 19-0 by halftime in the final through tries by Kurt Baker and a pair for Julian Savea.

 

But Uche Odouza, Micky Young and James Rodwell crossed in succession to pull England even.

 

Zar Lawrence dotted down for New Zealand to lead 26-19 but with seconds left, England replacement Dan Norton streaked to the posts and Ben Gollings converted to send the final into sudden death extra time.

 

At a five-meter scrum in front of the New Zealand line, England pushed New Zealand off the ball and scrumhalf Young darted to the blindside for the winning try in the left corner.

 

New Zealand eliminated South Africa 10-5 in a bruising semifinal. Solomon King and Baker scored within minutes bridging halftime for New Zealand, and Gio Aplon replied for South Africa.

 

England took out Scotland 26-12 after Scotland edged Portugal 22-21 in the quarterfinals.

 

New Zealand was a crushing 33-14 winner over Fiji, which went on to claim the plate, and South Africa defeated France 21-5 in their quarterfinal. 
 

Cup
Quarterfinals

South Africa 21, France 5
New Zealand 33, Fiji 14
Scotland 22, Portugal 21
England 26, Australia 12

Semifinals
New Zealand 10, South Africa 5
England 26, Scotland 12

Final
England 31, New Zealand 26, ET

 

Plate
Semifinals

Fiji 35, France 19
Portugal 19, Australia 10
Final
Fiji 24, Portugal 10

Bowl
Quarterfinals

Wales 36, Georgia 0
Argentina 24, United States 19
Kenya 12, Canada 7
Samoa 42, Germany 0

Semifinals
Wales 19, Argentina 14
Kenya 17, Samoa 10
Final
Kenya 12, Wales 7

 

Shield
Semifinals

United States 38, Georgia 12
Canada 26, Germany 24


Final
Canada 27, United States 7

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