Hamilton Sevens: New Zealand challenge for Cup title

The All Blacks Sevens have secured a bronze medal finish at their home tournament in Hamilton.

The hosts bounced back after being eliminated by the USA in the semis, easing to a 29-7 win over South Africa in the third-place playoff.

Earlier, ill-discipline cost the home side against the USA, which led 7-5 at half-time, but lost Vilimoni Koroi to a yellow card in the second half, leaving them short-handed for two minutes.

During that period, the Americans retook the lead through a try to Stephen Tomasin and then, with New Zealand restored to full strength, clinched the 17-7 win through speedster Carlin Isles.

Meanwhile, the Black Ferns Sevens coasted to the Fast Four title, crushing France 31-0 in the final.

Earlier, New Zealand progressed through to the semi-finals with a scrappy 24-17 win over Australia, outscoring their trans-Tasman opponents four tries to three.

Dylan Collier, Jona Nareki, and Regan Ware all scored first-half tries, as the All Blacks Sevens led 17-0 at the break.

New Zealand were sloppy in the opening changes in the second half and Australia made them pay, when Simon Kennewell scored their first, but All Blacks co-captain Tim Mikkelson cancelled out that effort, before Lewis Holland and Josh Coward's consolation tries for Australia.

The All Blacks Sevens lost Sam Dickson with a broken nose during the match, while co-captain Scott Curry was ruled out of the tournament earlier in the day with an ankle injury.

In the other quarter-finals, Fiji beat Canada 33-7, South Africa beat Samoa 28-19, and the USA beat Scotland 19-14.

On Day One, New Zealand were unbeaten in pool play with wins over Japan (52-0), Canada (49-10) and Spain (24-0).  

They've not won the New Zealand title since 2016, when the tournament was based in Wellington.

Meanwhile, the Black Ferns Sevens have accounted for China 41-0 to secure a spot in the women's 'fast four' exhibition final, against France.