Caption: New Zealand Women’s Sevens team after their win.Photo:World Rugby.
New Zealand claimed the second leg of the World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series after beating rivals Australia in another epic clash between the two sides in São Paulo.A try from player of the tournament Portia Woodman sealed the 17-10 win for her side, after the scores were locked at 10-10 in the second half.
The Kiwis were ahead at half time but a resolute effort from Australia, captained by Sharni Williams, saw a fight-back in the early stages of the second half. However, a scintillating break by Woodman saw her touch down in the corner to seal the second tournament victory for New Zealand this season
Speaking after the final whistle, winning coach Sean Horan said: “It was a real final – we knew it was going to be a game of chess. We were not lucky, but we got the rub of the green in the first half … and that got the momentum going.”
“There’s not much difference between these two sides, and I think that’s going to be the reality all the way through. It’s almost like the AB’s and South Africa – Aussie have gone really well and it’s credit to them.”
Brazil Sevens 2014/15
New Zealand captain Sarah Goss added: “To play Australia twice in a row and to get another win was amazing. The girls playing outstandingly and for Portia (Woodman) to get that try in the corner was epic.”
“Our first day was probably one of the best first days we’ve ever had, and to come in at the start of the year playing that kind of footy is great.”
Portia Woodman was named player of the tournament after a very impressive performance over the weekend in São Paulo, racking up a total of 13 tries, making her the series top scorer with over 60 touchdown’s since the inaugural season in 2012-13.
Earlier, Canada and France fought it out for the third place spot, with the North American side easily beating their opponents 19-0.
The Plate final was contested between England and USA in Arena Barueri with the English ladies winning 14-5. The Bowl final was claimed by Fiji, who won a physical battle with Spain, 17-12.
World Rugby Chairman Bernard Lapasset said: “This weekend in Brazil we witnessed yet another great display of what the women’s series is all about – intensity, energy, high skill levels and passionate performances.”
“We can see the step-up at each round and this was typified with another thrilling final between New Zealand and Australia.”
The next round of the Women’s Sevens Series is in Atlanta, USA, with all the action kicking off at Kennesaw State University on 14 and 15 March at the Fifth Third Bank Stadium. Tickets for the World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series start at $12.