South Africa beats France to win Vancouver Sevens title
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Defending series champion South Africa beat a resurgent France 21-12 in the final of the Vancouver Sevens on Sunday to claim its first title of the season in the...
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Ben Pinkleman scored two tries as the United States beat Samoa 27-0 on Sunday to defend its Las Vegas Sevens title and move clear atop the standings in the World Rugby Sevens...
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Series co-leaders New Zealand and the United States advanced to a semifinal against each other in the USA Sevens tournament and will be joined by Samoa and Argentina in the final...
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Series co-leaders New Zealand won their opening matches at the men's USA Sevens while the host Americans had a last-minute upset loss to Argentina after winning their opening...
NZ beats US 21-5 in Sydney Sevens final
SYDNEY (AP) — New Zealand moved into a tie for first place in the sevens rugby world series after beating the United States 21-5 in the Sydney Sevens final on Sunday.
New Zealand and Fiji have shared victories in the first four legs of the series, but the Kiwis are tied on points at the top with the U.S., which has reached all four finals.
Vilimoni Koroi set up Regan Ware for the opening try by New Zealand, and Ware helped Sam Dickson score the second to lead 14-0 at halftime.
Fiji and US into quarterfinals of men’s Sydney Sevens rugby
SYDNEY (AP) — Series co-leaders Fiji and the United States are into the men's quarterfinals of the Sydney Sevens on the IRB world series.
In the last pool match on Saturday, Fiji beat Pacific Island rivals Samoa 22-12 to advance to the final eight and a quarterfinal Sunday against Australia. Fiji won the Olympic gold medal in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Australia won the Sydney title last year.
Fiji beats USA 38-0 to win New Zealand Sevens
HAMILTON, New Zealand (AP) — Fiji beat the United States 38-0 to win the New Zealand leg of the World Rugby Sevens Series on Sunday, defending its title and consigning the Americans to their third straight loss in a tournament final.
The win was Fiji's second in consecutive tournaments this season after it took the Cape Town leg of the series and lifts it level on points with the United States atop the series table.
Fiji, US, South Africa and NZ top pools at rugby sevens
HAMILTON, New Zealand (AP) — Fiji, the United States, South Africa and New Zealand topped their pools with unbeaten records Saturday after the first day of the New Zealand leg of the World Rugby Sevens Series.
Defending world champions South Africa will play Samoa, World Series leaders the United States will play Scotland, Fiji will play Canada and New Zealand will play Australia in Sunday's quarterfinals.
Fiji wins Cape Town Rugby Sevens as US falls in final again
CAPE TOWN, South Africa (AP) — Fiji capitalized on mistake after mistake by the United States to win the Cape Town World Rugby Sevens 29-15 on Sunday, sending the Americans to a second straight defeat in a final at the start of the season.
The upside for the U.S. is that it leads the series standings by a point from New Zealand.
Fiji had already scored four tries to go 22-0 up before the U.S. could respond and the Fijians clinched their first title in South Africa since 2005.
Drama as NZ scrapes into quarters at Cape Town Sevens
CAPE TOWN, South Africa (AP) — New Zealand scored in the left corner more than a minute after the fulltime hooter to beat host South Africa 26-21 Saturday and scrape through to the quarterfinals at the Cape Town World Rugby Sevens.
The early series leader was in danger of missing the cup quarterfinals for the first time ever before a thrilling finish to pool play on the first day.
NZ win Dubai Sevens beating US in final 21-5
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — New Zealand won the Dubai Sevens rugby title a record-tying sixth time after beating first-time finalist the United States 21-5 on Saturday.
The Kiwis easily beat the Eagles on Friday in pool play, but the final was in the balance until two minutes to go, when Andrew Knewstubb's second conversion to Dylan Collier's brazen try gave the Kiwis a safe 14-5 lead.
SA lose but reach Dubai 7s quarters; NZ win women’s title
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Defending champion South Africa lost to Argentina 17-12 in a thriller and still progressed to the Dubai Sevens rugby quarterfinals on Friday.
South Africa blew a 12-0 lead, and conceded late penalties as Argentina rallied to trail by two. Conrado Roura appeared to score the match-winning try for Argentina with a minute left, but video showed he dropped the ball in Werner Kok's try-saving tackle.
Japan women improve to win Asian Games rugby gold
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) — Japan's women's rugby sevens team gave itself a timely boost two years out from the Tokyo Olympics when it beat China 7-5 and won the Asian Games final for the first time on Saturday.
While Japan's men have dominated Asian sevens for years, the women have struggled to stay ahead of their regional rival.
Japan was beaten by China in the last Asian Games final four years ago, and recently lost its spot to China as a "core" team in the world sevens series.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A player for Samoa's national rugby team has been ordered released from a San Francisco jail but he cannot leave the country pending trial on charges that he attacked players from Wales.
The San Francisco Examiner reports San Francisco Superior Court Judge Stephen Murphy ordered Gordon Langkilde's release from jail on Wednesday.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — New Zealand winger Akuila Rokolisoa took the offload from Trael Joass and split two English defenders. Seconds later he was somersaulting over the tryline with the ball, but he might as well have been carrying the Melrose Cup.
New Zealand rolled past England 33-12 on Sunday with a performance that featured speed, strength and a stout defense to repeat as Rugby World Cup Sevens champions and become the first three-time winner of the tournament.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The Black Ferns stood shoulder to shoulder Saturday as their national anthem played and day turned to dusk by the San Francisco Bay. About 30 minutes later they stood shoulder to shoulder again, this time atop a podium with gold medals draped around their necks.
The final was one-way traffic as New Zealand blanked France 29-0 and became the first country to repeat as Women's Rugby World Cup Sevens champions.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — English captain Tom Mitchell found some space on the pitch about 30 meters away from the try line. He glanced to his left and saw a big patch of open field so he lofted a high kick toward the sideline.
Phil Burgess did the rest.
The English flanker caught the ball at full pace and outran a diving defender before touching down to secure a 24-19 sudden-death win in extra-time against host United States in the Rugby World Cup Sevens quarterfinals on Saturday.
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The new knockout format didn't claim any major upset victims during the first day of the Rugby World Cup Sevens on Friday.
The 24-team men's field has been reduced to quarterfinalists while the 16-team women's tournament will be decided among New Zealand, Australia, the United States and France on Saturday.
The path to the Rugby World Cup Sevens title is the shortest ever.
Then again, the path out of contention is the shortest ever, too.
A new format for the seventh championship starting on Friday in San Francisco has dumped pool play and gone straight to knockout rounds, seemingly to appeal to a perceived shorter attention span of American fans.
World Rugby has called the change exciting and innovative. Others see the immediate pressure as brutal.
Govt forces Kenya Rugby Union to rehire 7s coach
NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — The Kenya Rugby Union was forced to rehire national sevens coach Innocent Simiyu on Monday, four days after sacking him in a payments dispute.
Government sports minister Rashid Echesa intervened and announced the decision after meeting with KRU head Thomas Opiyo.
Echesa also said his ministry will work with the KRU to resolve the latter's failure to pay the national sevens team its salaries since May, plus government-approved bonuses.
NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — A Kenyan parliamentary committee will investigate the Kenya Rugby Union in a player payments scandal which has cost the national sevens team its most successful coach and a big sponsorship.
Victor Munyaka, chairperson of the committee on sports, said the investigation won't risk title-contender Kenya's participation in the Rugby World Cup Sevens in San Francisco in a month. Kenya has reached the semifinals in the last two editions.
PARIS (AP) — It took until the last match of the last round to decide the rugby sevens world series as South Africa retained the title in a final twist in Paris on Sunday.
Fiji, on the back of winning the last four rounds, had to reach only the Paris Sevens final to clinch the series.
PARIS (AP) — Fiji lost for the first time since March yet kept alive its bid for the sevens rugby world series title by reaching the Paris Sevens quarterfinals on Saturday.
Fiji is in a race to the title with defending champion South Africa in the series finale. The Fijians lead by seven points overall, and can clinch the series by making the final at Stade Jean Bouin.
LONDON (AP) — Fiji moved to the brink of clinching the sevens rugby world series title after beating closest challenger South Africa 21-17 in the London final on Sunday.
The Fijians can win a third world series in four years by reaching the final in Paris next weekend in the last round, or advancing further than South Africa if the defending series champion stumbles early.
LONDON (AP) — World series leader Fiji pushed aside New Zealand 27-7 in winning their pool in London Sevens rugby at Twickenham on Saturday.
Fiji can't take the series this weekend, but a fourth consecutive tournament victory would make clinching easier in the series finale next weekend in Paris. Fiji is hunting a third series title in four years before taking aim at the Rugby Sevens World Cup in July.
SYDNEY (AP) — Next year's Sydney tournament on the Seven World Series will move to a 24,000-seat stadium at the former 2000 Olympic precinct in western Sydney.
Sydney Sevens organizers said Friday the Feb. 1-3, 2019 tournament will be held at Sydney Showground Stadium, home of the Australian Football League's Greater Western Sydney Giants and the venue which hosted the baseball tournament at the 2000 Olympics.
Fiji beats Australia in thriller to win Singapore Sevens
SINGAPORE (AP) — Alasio Sovita Naduva scored a length of the field try after the final siren as Fiji beat Australia 28-22 in a heart stopping finale to Sunday's Singapore Sevens to leapfrog South Africa at the top of the world series standings.
The Rio Olympic champions rebounded from the disappointment of losing to New Zealand in the gold medal match at the Commonwealth Games at Australia's Gold Coast earlier this month by capturing their first title in Singapore in spectacular fashion.
GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) — One of the most dramatic scenes at the Commonwealth Games came early on the final day.
Callum Hawkins of Scotland was leading the marathon Sunday morning when he became physically distressed and collapsed with about two kilometers remaining. Michael Shelley ran past to win the race and defend the title he won at Glasgow four years ago.
GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) — Rio revenge, a brain fade and a gripping contest forced into extra time.
New Zealand got some Olympic revenge on Australia to claim the inaugural Commonwealth Games rugby women's sevens gold medal with an extra-time win on Sunday. The Kiwis made it a double within the hour by upsetting Olympic champion Fiji 14-0 in the men's final.
GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) — The Fijian netball team went missing Saturday on the Gold Coast, failing to turn up to watch the semifinals of their Commonwealth Games sport.
Instead, they were found 30 kilometers (19 miles) further south at the rugby sevens where the Fijian men, Olympic champions, began their campaign with a 63-5 win over Sri Lanka.
There is an intense affinity between this nation and this particular sport.
But with that comes great expectations, particularly if you're the coach.
Semenya clinches 800-1,500 double at Commonwealth Games
GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) — Two-time Olympic champion Caster Semenya made it a middle-distance double at the Commonwealth Games, winning the 800 meters on Friday to follow up on her earlier victory in the 1,500.
Semenya, who won the 800 at the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, finished in 1 minute, 56.68 seconds, nearly 1.5 seconds faster than Margaret Nyairera Wambui of Kenya, who took the silver in 1:58.07. Natoya Goule of Jamaica finished third in 1:58.82.
GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) — Exhilarating, compelling, instantaneous — women's rugby sevens made its long-awaited debut at the Commonwealth Games.
Sevens is an ideal modern-day sport, each 14-minute match features back-to-back action and plenty of tries.
And the inclusion of the women's event hit a sweet spot for organizers of the Commonwealth Games, with tickets to Super Sunday — rugby's medal round — having sold out long ago for the 27,500 capacity Robina Stadium.
GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) — As Australia's gold-medal favorites were readying to return to the Commonwealth Games village from their self-imposed training bubble, the quarantined New Zealand women's rugby seven squad was sending a mumps-affected player home.
HONG KONG (AP) — Fiji won a fourth successive Hong Kong Sevens after pouncing on Kenya's ill-discipline and errors to take the final 24-12 on Sunday.
The most successful team in the tournament's history, Fiji matched England's record title run from 2002-06, won a sixth title in seven years, and 16th overall.
Captain Jerry Tuwai stressed the defense and Josua Vakurunabili finished on the outside for the opening try.
HONG KONG (AP) — Fiji crushed New Zealand 50-7 to complete pool play unbeaten at the Hong Kong Sevens on Saturday.
Either Fiji or New Zealand has featured in 33 of the last 35 Hong Kong finals, and together in 14, some of them classics, but this pool match was competitive only until halftime.
SYDNEY (AP) — Australia rugby sevens captain James Stannard was ruled out of the Commonwealth Games after his skull was broken in a street fight on Friday.
Stannard was taken to St. Vincent's Hospital, where he was in stable condition with a fractured skull.
Rugby Australia said he was struck by another man at 3:10 a.m. It said New South Wales Police have charged a 22-year-old man for an alleged "one-punch" assault.
Male athletes to watch at the 21st Commonwealth Games
GOLD COAST, Australia (AP) — More than 6,600 athletes and officials from across the world will converge on the Gold Coast for the 21st edition of the Commonwealth Games, the multi-sports event for 71 countries and territories of the British Commonwealth held every four years.
There will be 275 events across 19 sports at venues mostly on the Queensland state's coastal tourist strip, ranging from track and field and swimming to beach volleyball, which will make its debut at the games.
Andy Friend to be replaced as Australia’s Sevens coach
SYDNEY (AP) — Rugby Australia said Friday that Andy Friend will be replaced as the Australian men's sevens coach in July after 18 months in the job.
It said Friend unsuccessfully applied for a new contract, with the former ACT Brumbies coach's successor to be named on Monday.
Fiji beat Kenya 31-12 to win Canada Sevens
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Sevuloni Mocenacagi scored two tries as Fiji beat Kenya 31-12 in the final of the Canada Sevens rugby tournament Sunday to become the first team to win two titles in this season's Sevens World Series.
Mocenacagi touched down on either side of halftime, first to draw Fiji level with Kenya at 12-12 at the break, then to begin a run of 19 unanswered points in the second half. That carried Fiji to its 33rd victory in 67 appearances in World Series finals.
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — New Zealand beat World Rugby Sevens series leaders South Africa 33-14 to finish top of their pool at the Canada Sevens tournament on Saturday and set up a quarterfinal showdown with the United States.
The New Zealanders, who trailed South Africa (92 points) by 10 points going into Vancouver's sixth leg on the 10-stop circuit, beat Scotland 31-26, Russia 31-5 and then struck a psychological blow with victory over the South Africans.
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Danny Barrett scored two tries to lift the United States to a 28-0 win over Argentina in the final of the Las Vegas Sevens on Sunday, giving the Americans only their second title in rugby's World Sevens Series and first on home soil.
Bearded and barrel-chested, Barrett mixed the power of a forward with the fleet-footed skills of a back to touch down on either side of halftime as the United States produced a flawless performance in its first home final.
South Africa into USA Sevens semis vs Argentina
LAS VEGAS (AP) — World series leaders South Africa are into the USA Sevens semifinals after beating Australia 29-17 on Saturday.
At the 40,000-seat Sam Boyd Stadium, the South Africans advanced to Sunday's semifinal against Argentina, which beat Kenya 17-12.
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Rugby Sevens world series leaders South Africa posted two victories Friday on the opening day of the USA Sevens, while second-place New Zealand split their two matches.
South Africa, also the defending champions in Las Vegas, opened its play in Pool B with a 26-21 win over Wales, scoring a last-minute try for the victory. South Africa then beat Canada 19-12 in the last match of the night at Sam Boyd Stadium, scoring two early tries before Canada had a late surge to make it close.
Surprise star Simmonds shines for England in 6N
He darted around the fringes like a scrumhalf, offloaded like a flyhalf, had the turn of foot of a winger, and posted the tackle count of a blindside flanker.
Sam Simmonds wore the No. 8 jersey on the day he announced himself on rugby's world stage, yet he could have had another number on his back such was his all-action display against Italy in the Six Nations on Sunday.
Fiji beats South Africa 24-17 to win New Zealand Sevens
HAMILTON, New Zealand (AP) — Alosio Sovita Naduva scored three tries as Fiji rallied from 17-5 down at halftime to beat South Africa 24-17 Sunday in the final of the New Zealand leg of the Rugby Sevens World Series.
In claiming its first World Series title since Hong Kong in April last year, Fiji looked again like the team that claimed the first Olympic gold medal in sevens in Rio de Janeiro two years ago.
Fiji, NZ, Kenya and South Africa top pools at NZ Sevens
HAMILTON, New Zealand (AP) — South Africa, New Zealand, Fiji and Kenya topped their groups Saturday at the New Zealand leg of the World Rugby Sevens Series, staged for the first time in Hamilton.
The world champion South Africans, host New Zealand and Olympic champion Fiji all finished with unblemished 3-0 records from pool play while Kenya topped the tight Pool D with two wins and a draw.
Australia wins men’s, women’s titles at Sydney Sevens
SYDNEY (AP) — Australia swept the men's and women's titles at the Sydney Rugby Sevens on Sunday, becoming the first nation to win both trophies in one tournament in the World Rugby Sevens Series.
The Australian women beat New Zealand 31-0 in their final to become the first women's team to win a home tournament in the World Series and the men beat defending World Series champions South Africa 29-0 to win a tournament on Australian soil for the first time in 16 years.
Australia beats NZ 31-0 to win women’s final at Sydney 7s
SYDNEY (AP) — Olympic champion Australia made history Sunday when it crushed New Zealand 31-0 in the women's final of the Sydney Rugby Sevens.
Australia beat New Zealand for the first time in five meetings since the Olympic final in Rio de Janiero in 2016 in which it beat its trans-Tasman rival to become the first women's gold medalist in rugby sevens.