Games-New Zealand strike double gold in rugby sevens

Games-New Zealand strike double gold in rugby sevens

Games-New Zealand strike double gold in rugby sevens

Watching New Zealand's women win the first rugby sevens Commonwealth Games title had inspired the men's team to complete a golden double against their respective Rio Olympic champions on Sunday, Tim Mikkelson said.

Defending champions South Africa, New Zealand, Fiji and England came through the pool stages unbeaten on a day packed full of drama and excitement at Robina Stadium to book their places in the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Men's Sevens semifinals.

With only the pool winners to progress to the knockout stages and remain in contention for a medal there was no room for complacency with every match a must-win encounter.

Portia Woodman opened the scoring in typical fashion, the World Rugby Women's 15s Player of the Year 2017 racing down the touchline to score her sixth try of the Games but the Black Ferns Sevens were then reduced to five players with first captain Sarah Goss yellow-carded and then Michaela Blyde for a high tackle on Julia Greenshields as she scored the try.

Australia's win also confirmed England's place in the last four and world champions New Zealand stand between them and a guaranteed medal in the first Commonwealth Games women's rugby sevens competition. The victor will face Australia in the final.

The ball landed in the arms of veteran Kurt Baker, who booted the ball out of play to wrap up New Zealand's gold medal.

Facing a ferociously partisan crowd in the women's final against Australia, Kelly Brazier's 60-metre dash deep into extra-time had given the New Zealand women a 17-12 victory.

Australia's Emma Tonegato put the match out of reach in the second half, scoring a pair of tries for a 26-7 lead before the scoring was capped off by teammate Charlotte Caslick.

Australia were awarded a penalty after the siren, but Cassie Staples - apparently thinking her side was up following Green's try - kicked the ball into touch.

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