Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022 results: Fiji and Australia crowned men’s and women’s world champions
- Fiji’s men win title for third time after previous triumphs in both editions hosted in Hong Kong in 1997 and 2005
- All-conquering Australian women add to recent Commonwealth Games and World Series victories
Australia and Fiji were crowned women’s and men’s world champions respectively after claiming exhilarating victories at Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022 in Cape Town, South Africa.
The all-conquering Australian women added Rugby World Cup Sevens glory to their recent Commonwealth Games and World Series victories to secure a hat-trick of major titles and cap an unstoppable 2022 with a 24-22 win.
The women’s final came to a nail-biting conclusion as a hat-trick of tries from Maddison Levi and one from tournament top scorer Faith Nathan were just enough to see the women in green and gold to victory, as the unfortunate Tenika Willison failed with a conversion attempt that would have put the match into extra time following New Zealand tries by Kelly Brazier, Shiray Kaka, Stacey Fluhler and Alena Saili.
“It’s a pretty special feat that this group of young girls has done,” Charlotte Caslick, Australia women’s co-captain, said. “It was something we’ve been brave enough to put out there and put everything on the line to come away with.
“It’s incredible. I’m so proud of the girls - it’s been an honour to lead them this year and to watch the growth they’ve had as a group and as a team on and off the field.”
Double Olympic champions Fiji got off to a flying start in the men’s final with four first-half tries from Joseva Talacolo, Kaminieli Rasaku, Elia Canakaivata and Filipe Sauturaga.
New Zealand got on the scoreboard through tries from Moses Leo and Akuila Rokolisoa amid a flurry of yellow cards in a hotly contested match.
The Fijians defended ferociously, pushing New Zealand all the way back under their own posts, and sealed a superb 29-12 victory with the final play through a fifth try from Pilipo Bukayaro.
Fiji lifted the Rugby World Cup Sevens trophy for the third time, having previously won in both editions hosted in Hong Kong in 1997 and 2005, they now join New Zealand on three wins.
“I am really proud of the boys, not just the boys but the team as a whole – the management, the coaches – for how we have worked these past weeks,” Fiji’s Jerry Tuwai said.
“We have so much, so much respect for New Zealand – the coaches, the players and the captain. We knew that they would fight back because they are a champion. We just worked hard and it happened. Thank you very much to the people of Fiji, we are so blessed we have so many supporters around the world.”
Before the finals took place there were ecstatic scenes of celebration as Ireland’s men made history by winning the first medal at any Rugby World Cup as they claimed bronze with a 19-14 victory over Australia thanks to tries from Sean Cribbin, Harry Mcnulty And Terry Kennedy.
France followed up their silver medal in San Francisco four years ago by securing bronze in Cape Town with a comprehensive five-try win against the USA. A pair of tries from Lili Dezou, and scores by Joanna Grisez, Ian Jason and Alycia Chrystiaens.