Samoa win IRB’s Adelaide Sevens

Samoa confirmed their emergence as a sevens power when they achieved back-to-back titles by downing the United States 38-10 in the final of the Australia round of the IRB Sevens on Sunday.

In a six tries to two romp, Samoa added the Adelaide crown to their breakthrough win in this year’s Las Vegas final after losing in the final in New Zealand in 2008.

The United States in their first ever final put up a brave showing in the first half but trailed 5-12 at the turn after Fautua Otto and Mikaele Pesamino scored for Samoa and Nick Edwards touched down for the USA.

The floodgates opened after half-time with Ofisa Treviranus, Otto, Pesamino and Uale Mai all scoring for Samoa before Zach Pangelinan earned a consolation try for the USA at the end.

“I’m speechless,” Samoa coach Stephen Betham said as his side huddled in prayer after the final whistle.

“We’re trying to build up and work our way to the top and we’re trying to promote local players as we do the job.”

With three tournaments remaining, Samoa are now within two points of series leaders New Zealand, whose history of failing in Adelaide and falling to Samoa continued.

Samoa and the United States both finished second in their respective pools but the path to the finals opened up for them after the quarter-finals were riddled with upsets.

Top seeds New Zealand led Samoa 19-14 with time on the clock in the quarter finals when Pesamino scored the equaliser and Timoteo Iosua added the winner a minute into golden point extra time.

It was Samoa’s fourth win over New Zealand in the series after recording wins in the pool stages in South Africa, winning their semi-final in Wellington and the Las Vegas final.

The United States beat Wales in the quarter-finals and followed with a win over Argentina, who had earlier eliminated South Africa — the team that pipped Samoa in pool play.

Regular sevens high-flyers Fiji were beaten by Australia in the quarter-finals when James Stannard scored two late tries to secure a 26-22 victory.

But that was the end of the road for the Australians who were beaten by Samoa in the semis.

The IRB Sevens series now moves to Hong Kong next weekend with New Zealand on 96 points followed by Samoa with 94, Fiji with 74, Australia with 62 and England on 54.

The final two tournaments are in England and Scotland in May.

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