Fiji’s men and New Zealand’s women turned on the style to win the HSBC France Sevens in Toulouse on Sunday.
Ireland, led by the excellent Terry Kennedy, played some impressive rugby to reach their first ever men’s Cup final, but in the final the Fijians - off the back of gold in Singapore and silver in Vancouver, Canada – were too strong.
They won the final 29-17 and Tevita Dagunu said: “Teamwork in defence and attack was what this victory was built on. We kept the ball well and stuck to our game plan.
“To all the Fijians around the globe, this win is for you.”
Waisea Nacuqu was HSBC player of the final and he said: “Ireland played well, but we worked hard.”
After a breathless three days, it is Argentina, who finished fifth here, who are now top of the men’s overall standings with 118 points with two events to go.
Long-time leaders South Africa are second on 116 after a frustrating time in France while Australia are third on 110 and Ireland fourth on 88. After this win, Fiji are now fifth on 87 points after missing out on rounds three and four played in Spain due to the effects of the pandemic.
Meanwhile, this was the last women’s tournament of the 2022 Series and the Cup final in Toulouse was a fitting finale to a brilliant six rounds of world class rugby sevens.
Reigning Olympic champions New Zealand won their first title since Sydney in 2020 when they defeated 2022 Series champions Australia 21-14 in a thrilling final.
Head coach Cory Sweeney, who claimed his first title since taking on the role said: “It is a proud moment and an emotional moment for us all.
“After Langford we worked on a few things, had some awesome training sessions and we put that into practice this week.”
HSBC player of the final Sarah Hirini said: “I love this squad, I have amazing team mates and we will enjoy this moment.”
It means that New Zealand, who missed part of the series due to Covid concerns, finished fifth overall on 57 points.
Friday May 20, 2022
South Africa vs Ireland 12-21
Samoa vs Spain 42-12
New Zealand vs Scotland 19-0
Australia vs USA 19-24
England vs Canada 24-5
Argentina vs Japan 43-5
France vs Wales 56-5
Fiji vs Kenya 29-5
South Africa vs Spain 27-7
Samoa vs Ireland 27-14
New Zealand vs USA 19-7
Australia vs Scotland 28-7
England vs Japan 21-10
Argentina vs Canada 12-19
France vs Kenya 38-14
Fiji 19 Wales 0
Saturday May 21, 2022
13:00 Ireland vs Spain 26-21
13:22 Samoa vs South Africa 19-7
13:44 Scotland vs USA 12-28
14:06 Australia vs New Zealand 29-14
14:28 Canada vs Japan 40-14
14:50 Argentina vs England 19-7
15:12 Wales vs Kenya 14-19
15:34 Fiji vs France 33-21
9th Place quarterfinals
Kenya vs Scotland 14-26
Nee Zealand vs Wales 28-0
Canada vs Spain 19-21
South Africa vs Japan 40-0
19:04 Argentina vs Ireland 0-14
19:48 Samoa vs England 26-24
21:05 Australia vs France 19-21
22:03 Fiji vs USA 19-17
Sunday May 22, 2022
13th Place Semifinals
11:58 Wales vs Canada 22-7
12:20 Japan vs Kenya 28-12
9th place semifinals
12:50 Spain vs New Zealand 7-36
13:12 Scotland vs South Africa 24-21
5th Place semifinals
Australia vs Argentina 7-22
13:56 England vs USA 29-14
15:14 Ireland vs France 24-7
15:36 Fiji vs Samoa 28-7
13th place Play-off
16:46 Wales vs Japan 14-28
9th Place Play-off
17:08 New Zealand vs Scotland 42-7
5th Place Play-off
17:30 Argentina vs England 21-12
Bronze final 18: 29:
France vs Samoa 17-12
Gold Final 19:26: Ireland vs Fiji 17-29