Samoa stun All Blacks to emerge Dubai Rugby Sevens champions for first time

Canada win Plate, Argentina Bowl and England Shield

Samoa beat tournament favourites New Zealand 26-15 to win the Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens Cup final for the first time with a stunning performance at The Sevens on Saturday.

The Pacific islanders raced to a 12-0 lead after just four minutes following a brace of tries from Paul Perez who scored the first within 10 seconds after gathering the ball from the kick-off.

Patrick Faapale landed a superb touchline conversion to give Samoa a 12-0 lead in the final.

Ben Lam hit back for the All Blacks Sevens but Lio Lolo gave Samoa a 19-5 cushion with a spectacular dash on the right flank with Faapale adding the extra points.

But New Zealand's veteran captain D J Forbes set up a dramatic finale with an inspiring run on the right to close the gap to 19-10 on the stroke of half time.

New Zealand continued their fightback after Kurt Baker scored his sixth try of the tournament after having an earlier effort disallowed.

With two minutes remaining, Samoa's Tulolo Tulolo then kicked ahead and beat Tomasi Cama in a race to the ball. Faapale's conversion gave Samoa an unassailable lead.

"We are really proud of what the boys did today. They did a really good job and achieved what we were aiming for and won their first ever cup in Dubai," said Samoa captain Afa Aiono.
"It was touch and go. New Zealand are a pretty good team but our boys stepped up and played their hearts out."

New Zealand lead the standings in the HSBC Sevens World Series on 38 points with Fiji, Kenya and Samoa tied in second place on 32 points. France are fifth on 27 points with South Africa sixth on 24 points.

"It’s amazing and I’m very happy today. I took off my hat yesterday to the boys and I hope we keep this for next week," said Tausa Faamaoni Lalomilo, coach of Manu Samoa.
"We give this win to our people back home and also for the young fellows we brought in in preparation for the Olympics in Brazil in 2016."

Kenya finished third after beating France in the third place play-off thanks to Collins Injera's sixth try of the tournament.

France drew first blood through a try by Julien Candelon to lead 7-0 after three minutes.

Kenya hit back from a scrum five metres out as Collins Injera sprinted down the left touchline to score.

Horace Otieno powered through from short range to give Kenya a 10-7 lead at half time.

Oscar Ouma scored Kenya's third try to extend their lead 15-7.

France bounced back with a try by Terry Bouhraoua but Kenya survived to win 15-12.

Reigning World Cup champions Wales beat Canada 21-14 to win the Plate thanks to a double from James Davies.

In their semifinal Rhys Jones scored 17 points through a hat-trick of tries and a conversion, as the Red Dragons beat the champions from the Gold Coast Fiji 27-5.

In the other semifinal, Canada rallied to defeat Portugal 28-12 after their 19-7 Cup semifinal loss to Kenya, inspired by two tries from Nathan Hirayama.

Argentina impressed on day two, going unbeaten to lift the Bowl title and leaving England, Scotland and South Africa staggering in the process.

Matias Moroni scored twice the final to give them a 14-0 lead, but were made to work hard by Paul Treu's side who eventually lost 14-10.

South Africa reached the Bowl final by beating USA 22-14 thanks to two tries from Cornal Hendricks before Argentina beat 2010 and 2011 Dubai champions England 24-14 to book their place.

England's Marcus Watson scored two tries to end England's disappointing Dubai campaign by defeating Spain 26-5 in the Shield final.

Having lost to the same side in the Bowl final in Australia, this was some consolation for Ben Ryan's side who gain three Series points.

In the Shield semifinal, Spain defeated Russia in an entertaining affair 26-24, thanks to a late try to Jaike Carter.

The second semifinal saw heavyweights England face Australia and spearheaded by a hat-trick by speedster Dan Norton, the defending champions gave their fans something to cheer about with 40-12 victory.

Samoa and New Zealand coasted into the Cup finals with comfortable wins over France and Kenya.

New Zealand beat Kenya 27-7, with Scott Curry and Tim Mikkelson both crossing twice. 

Samoa reached the final after beating last year's runners-up France 12-5 in the first semifinal thanks to tries from Reupena Levasa and Robert Lilomaiava.

France surprised Samoa when Terry Bouhraoua scored off a breakaway in the right corner in the second minute to give them a 5-0 lead at the interval.

Samoa got their act together after the turn around with Lio Lolo almost scoring but for his leg sliding outside the in-goal area.

However, the Samoans turned on the pressure to wrong foot the backpeddling French with two tries off interceptions.

Paul Albaladejo touched down under the posts to give them a 7-5 lead while Robert Lilomaiava came off the bench to score a spectacular try by sprinting over 60 metres in injury time to bring victory for Samoa.

The Sevens All Blacks stepped up a gear against Kenya by scoring five tries forcing the opposition to commit errors.

Tomasi Cama  opened the floodgates by putting the finishing touches to an expansive move in the right corner.

Mikkelson powered his way over the line in quick succession pouncing on some poor defensive work to give New Zealand a 15-0 lead at the break.

Curry swelled their tally after the interval with two searing runs before Collins Injera scored a consolation try for Kenya in the dying stages of the game. 

Earlier in the day, France beat Fiji 8-5 with a last-gasp penalty goal to knock out Gold Coast champions Fiji in the Cup quarter-finals.

With 40 seconds to go, tournament favourites Fiji gave away a penalty which France's Paul Albaladejo converted to book their ticket into the semifinals.

France drew first blood late in the first half with an unconverted try by Jean Baptiste Gobelet.

New cap Peni Vaciloa equalised in the second spell after being set up by Setefano Cakau and Lepani Botia.

Fiji virtually kicked themselves out of contention when Botia's attempted overhead kick as Fiji trailed 5-8, allowed the French to kill the ball and win.

Samoa overcame a spirited Wales 19-7 in their quarter-final.

New Zealand were too strong for giant-killers Portugal running out impressive 28-7 winners with Tomasi Cama crossing for two tries.

Kenya who got home against Canada 19-7 thanks to a moment of magic to Collins Injera who charged down a kick and then sprinted away to score the deciding try, his fourth of the tournament.

The All Blacks Sevens were by far the most impressive as they outclassed Portugal who opened proceedings with a fortuitous try despite the ball being knocked off Diogo Miranda's hand at the corner flag.

New Zealand drew level after some intense pressure on the line with Cama sneaking away from a close quarter scrum in the fifth minute.

Kurt Baker showed his footballing skills after winning a kick-and-chase to touch down between the posts to give New Zealand a 14-7 lead at the break.

Baker produced a superb break after the interval to provide the assist for Cama's second try while Sherwin Stowers came off the bench to add a fourth try for the Sevens All Blacks.

South Africa looked an improved side from day one and beat Russia 25-12, but England’s tournament disappointment continued with a dismal 24-14 defeat at the hands of Argentina.

Scotland secured their first victory of the tournament with a 29-14 defeat of Australia.

The USA also won their first game of the tournament, narrowly beating Spain 14-12 in the day’s opening game.

In the IRB Women’s Sevens World Series, Canada falling at the first hurdle in the morning with a 14-10 defeat to Australia.

England women’s woes continued as they were demolished by New Zealand, 31-0.

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