Live Updates: 2019 Hamilton Sevens, Day One

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8:56pm: Time is up, but Spain have the ball, with a chance to score and qualify.

Baker steals possession to score a try and put a nail in the Spanish coffin. How costly was that bran explosion from Ramos against Canada now?

New Zealand win 24-0 - they will now face Australia in the quarters, Canada take on Fiji.

It's been an absorbing day of action, so be sure to join us again at 10am Sunday morning, as the knockout games begin.

8:53pm: Jona Nareki makes a run down the right touch and pops the ball back inside for Sione Molia to score. That puts Spain behind the plus-minus to progress, NZ 17-0.

8:49pm: Collier puts Tim Mikkelson over in the right corner to stretch the lead to 12-0. Spain need to keep their composure here.

8:45pm: Great defence from Spain has kept New Zealand at bay through most of the first half, with Dylan Collier finally breaking the deadlock 1m 40s after time expires. NZ 7-0.

Spain still look good for a quarter-final spot, but must avoid a second-half collapse.

8:33pm: The Canadians win 26-0, with Douglas scoring two tries. That leaves them with a points differential of minus-13, which means they can still progress if Spain lose by more than 16 points to New Zealand.

Next up, the All Blacks face Spain without co-captain Scott Curry, who injured himself in warm-ups. He's got ice on his ankle on the side-line.

8:21pm: Canada are 14-0 at half-time, after tries to Nathan Hirayama and Justin Douglas, but they probably need to pick up the pace, if they hope to reach the quarters.

Their plus-minus is now minus-25, while Spain are plus-three, with a game against the All Blacks to come.

8:11pm: Fiji lead, after a try to Mesulame Kunavula, but the Aussies are pressing with time up on the clock - they knock on. Fiji win 26-19 to top Pool A, with Australia second.

If New Zealand beat Spain, they play Australia in the quarterfinals. If they lose, the All Blacks Sevens face Fiji.

Canada now take on Japan and Canada can still qualify for the quarters with a huge win.

8:06pm: Australia have locked the scores up at 19-19 with a try to Lewis Holland and three minutes left - this could be a boilover.

7:58pm: Fiji lead 19-14 at half-time, so this game could go either way. We probably don't want Australia to win though.

They're riding a 12-game losing streak to Fiji, dating back to Hong Kong 2016.

7:49pm: The South Americans run in another three tries during the second half to clinch the 36-7 win and Wales are still looking for their first pool success.

Next up, Fiji and Australia. The Fijians have been rampant today, but the unbeaten Aussies are celebrating Australia Day.

Of course, these two teams are also playing off to see who face New Zealand in the quarter-finals.

7:37pm: Argentina are a man down, but still steal a try from the Welsh to establish a 12-0 lead, but Rio Dyer responds to give Wales a sniff. They haven't won in pool play this season.

Mateo Carreras has a double before half-time though, as Argentina lead 17-7.

7:26pm: That win clinches top spot in Pool B for the USA and they will now face Scotland in the quarter-finals.

Samoa will take on South Africa and England surprisingly miss out on the top eight in a tough pool.

Next up, Argentina and Wales have yet to win a game, so they're both out of contention for the quarter-finals.

7:25pm: American Carlin Isles shows his pace down the right touch-line, beating Tom Bowen to the try-line. That suely clinches it - USA 19-7.

7:23pm: Dan Norton crosses for England to give them a sniff - this isn't over, although the kick misses. USA 12-5.

7:21pm: Tomasin splits the English defence and sprints 70 metres for a try that may seal England's fate. USA 12-0, but still four minutes left.

7:15pm: The Americans score first through a try from Madison Hughes in the opening minute and they lead 5-0 at half-time. England badly need a win here or they're out of the tournament.

7:05pm: Alosio scores at the end of the match, he gets his second and leads the Samoans to a 28-12 win. Now, England vs USA - a real crunch match for England.

7:03pm: Try time. That should do it. A tired Tongan defence can't stop Tomasi Alosio who runs in. 21-12. 

6:59pm: Tonga are in again. After two penalties Samo's defence breaks. Haloti Tupou scores the try, it's 14-10 to Samoa.

6:51pm: Free flowing Rugby from Tonga, they score after the half-time hooter, great work from Lotu Inisi who powers through a couple of tackles before reaching out to score a try. 14-5 at HT. 

6:50pm: A fantastic run from Tonga is stopped at the 22 with Samoa picking the ball up and Danny Tusitala made the break before giving the pill to Afamasaga for his second of the match. 14-0. 

6:45pm: Alamanda Motuga scores the first try in the clash of the islands. 7-0 Samoa. 

6:44pm: Samoa vs Tonga starts now. 

6:40pm: South Africa win 26-7 to remain unbeaten on day one. 

6:35pm: South Africa hit straight back through Werner Kok. 

6:34pm: Try for Scotland, great work at the breakdown and they get the ball wide to Sam Pecqueur who scores and nails the conversion. 12-7. 

6:29pm: South Africa score another try, this time it's Branco Du Preez, he finishes of some scrappy play and they extend their lead to 12-0 at HT. 

6:27pm: What a try from South Africa, Siviwe Soyizwapi breaks three tackles to bundle over and score the opener of the match, They lead 7-0. 

6:20pm: It's over, France were dominating, and then a knock on just 10 metres out has cost them, Kenya hold on to win 19-15. Up next is South Africa vs Scotland. 

6:18pm: Another Try!! Jimmy Yobo scores out wide for France, a great finish coming up here. 

6:17pm: Remi Siega scores to keep things interesting for France. 19-10 with a minute to go. 

6:13pm: Daniel Taabu scores a great try with a right foot step and finished it off with a great run to extend the lead to 19-5. 

6:07pm: A great break from Johnstone Olindi who breaks through a tackle and gives a simple pass to Vincent Onyala who scores an easy try to take the lead. 12-5 at HT.

6:04pm: Try for France, the hit back through Nisie Huyard, 5-5. 

6:02pm: Try time for Kenya, It's Jacob Ojee he gets the ball out wide and gasses everyone to take the ball from coast to coast. 

5:58pm: Here we go, up next is France vs Kenya. 

5:35pm: Up next will be France vs Kenya at 6pm. 

5:28pm: Michaela Blyde says good night nurse as she scores to make it a 24-5 win for the hosts, she breaks two tackles to go over for her first. 

5:22pm: France score! Audrey Amiel scores after a rare mistake from the Kiwis, 17-5. 

5:16pm: And another for Waaka, Another turnover costs France as the Kiwi ladies spin it wide and Waaka is there to finish it off easily. 17-0. 

5:13pm: Waaka gets a double after pouncing on a mistake from France, the try takes it out to a 12-0 lead. 

5:11pm: Stacey Waaka scores the first of the match, after an offload from Tui. 7-0. 

5:10pm: Kick-off in the Women's match. Black Ferns Sevens vs France. 

4:48pm: Andrew Knewstubb scores the final try of the match with NZ winning 49-10. 

4:44pm: Joe Ravouvou hits straight back from the kick off, claims of a knokc-on but the ref says play on, he strides over and scores to make the score 35-10. 

4:43pm:  Canada gets their second. It's Cole Davis, after a good passage of attack from Canada, he goes over. 28-10.

4:40pm: Some great work from Pat Kay and he offloads it to Justin Douglas who scores Canada's first. 

4:35pm: A yellow card for Canada, Mike Fuailefau is sent off, and just after the card, Scott Curry gets the pass from Kurt Baker and Curry strolls over. 28-0. 

4:33pm: Sam Dickson with a fantastic offload, to Ware who runs in for his second try. 

4:32pm: Another try from the Kiwis, Regan Ware makes the break after a turnover and scores a great try. 14-0.

4:29pm: What a try!! From the kickoff, Vilimoni Koroi gets the ball hits the gap, puts on a right foot step and scores under the post. 

4:28pm: Here come the Kiwis, ready to take on Canada. 

4:27pm: Japan score on the full-time whistle, but it;s in vain. Spain win 22-19. 

4:24pm: Another try for Spain, could that be it? Pol Pla scores after a turnover on Japan's 22. 

4:21pm: What a try, A double dummy from Manuel Sainz-Trapaga who scores a try after making the break in his own half, Spain lead, 17-12. 

4:20pm: Japan score in the corner to retake the lead. A great piece of work, finished off by Dai Ozawa. 12-10. 

4:12pm: Try time, a great try for Spain, Joan Losada scores outwide, he finishes a good move started at the halfway line. 10-7. 

4:10pm: Japan go over take the lead. Naoki Motomura finishes off a great attack from Japan. 

4:09pm: INJURY UPDATE: Sarah Hirini nee Goss is ruled out of this weekend's tournament with an ankle injury. 

4:07pm: Try time. Spain's Alejandro Alonso scores in the corner after a dominant Spainish attack. 5-0

4:02pm: Argentina score right on full-time but it isn't enough, Fiji win 33-24.Spain vs Japan is next. 

3:59pm: Try time. Mateo Carreras, What a try! Broken play and the  speedster finishes a great try. 33-12. 

3:50pm: Argentina score just before half-time. A much needed try for the South Americans. It's Mateo Carreras who scores in the corner. 19-12 at HT. 

3:48pm: What a  great try once again, classic Fiji, offload after offload and Derenalagi gets his second. 

3:46pm: Meli Derenalagi scores after beautiful work from the Fijians to re-take the lead. Great passing nad a good finish. 12-5

3:44pm: Argentina hit back, Santiago Mare gets onto a great grubber and scores to tie the game. 

3:43pm: Try time for Fiji, it's Waisea Nacuqu scores in the corner with a counter attack from an Argentinian mistake 5-0.

3:42pm: Fiji get us underway. 

3:37pm: Full time: Austrlalia are too good, beating Wales 26-5. Fiji vs Argentina is next. 

3:33pm: Wales hit back, but it's probably too late. Rio Dyer makes a break down the ledt wing and he scores. 26-5.

3:27pm: Australia are in again, they will take a 26-0 lead to the break over Wales. 

3:24pm: Another try for Aussie, it's Lachie Anderson who scores his first try of the weekend. The lads spin the ball wide and Anderson finishes it off very well. 14-0. 

3:21pm: First try for Australia against Walesm it's Ben O'Donnell who scores under the posts. 

3:16pm: USA easily defeat Samoa 34-14 and can now look forward to the quarter-finals. They have another pool game against England, but at this stage, that's more important to the English, who probably need another result to progress.

Australia vs Wales next.

3:02pm: Samoa score first, but the Americans road back to score four tries before the break for a 26-7 half-time lead.

2:54pm: Valiant effort from Tonga, but England discover their mojo to run away with this contest 36-7. Tom Bowen enters the game late for a try double.

They probably need victory over the USA this evening to progress past pool play.

The United States and Samoa - both first-up winners - meet next.

2:36pm: More news on US flyer Perry Baker - he has a fractured jaw, after that smashing tackle against Tonga.

Meanwhile, Tonga draw first blood with a try to Tana Fotofili and England are reduced to six men with a yellow card.

2:30pm: South African complete a 17-5 win over France to secure their quarter-final spot. Their clash with Scotland later this evening will determine who tops that pool.

Next up, England desperately need a win against Tonga to rekindle their tournament hopes, after an upset loss to Samoa first up.

2:17pm: Tries to Werner Kok and Siviwe Soyizwapi have given the Blitz Bokke a 10-0 lead, but France are not out of this yet. 

2:07pm: Kenya grab a couple of late tries, but Scotland emerge 19-10 winners and secure a quarter-final spot - it remains to be seen whether they top Pool C.

South Africa and France take the field, with France needing a win to keep their knockout chances alive.

1:57pm: Robbie Fergusson has two first-half tries to steer Scotland to a 14-0 lead over Kenya at the break.

1:49pm: England fail to reach 10 metres with their kick-off and New Zealand are able to close out their victory 19-7.

Scotland now face Kenya in the men's draw - the Scots beat France first up, but the Kenyans fell to South Africa. A win here would go a long way to cementing a quarter-final spot for Scotland.

1:46pm: Waaka features again, sprinting down the left touch-line, and when she's confronted, she flicks a lovely back-handed pass for Gayle Broughton to score. NZ 19-7.

Rowland secures her double to close the scores with a minute remaining. NZ 19-14.

1:39pm: After a full round of men's games, England's Tom Bowen leads the performance tracker with 11 points. Dylan Collier is the top All Blacks player with eight points.

Interesting - and disappointing - that the official IRB Sevens website is totally ignoring the women's games, which make no appearance on the match schedule or live updates.

1:37pm: Hirini has hobbled to the side-line with what looks like an ankle injury. Hopefully, that's not too bad.

England's Helena Rowland runs 60 metres for a try to reduced the half-time deficit to 14-7.

1:31pm: Sarah Hirini (formerly Goss) crosses next, following a long break from Stacey Waaka. NZ 14-0.

1:28pm: Michaela Blyde shows her gas to pierce the defence and race away for a try. Wow... NZ 7-0.

1:26pm: France score two more tries before full-time to stretch the score-line to 31-7.

Now the Black Ferns take on England. Tyler Nathan Wong kick-off ritual has the Newshub sports department in fits.

1:21pm: China show plenty of courage, as you'd expect. They're reduced to six players, but hold France out during that two minutes and then produce a runaway try of their own to close the margin to 19-7.

1:13pm: As expected, the French women are steamrolling China, leading 19-0 at half-time and scoring three tries in the process.

1:02pm: Women make their first appearance - albeit an unofficial one - at this event, with France taking on China first up in a 'fast four' format.

The Black Ferns Sevens take on England next. New Zealand beat France in last year's World Cup final and again at the Youth Olympcs final, so they're a major threat.

12:54pm: Koroi returns the favour with a lovely long cut-out pass that finds Ravouvou still lurking on the left to cross untouched. New Zealand have their 50 and have held Japan scoreless - a comprehensive opening performance.

New Zealand 50 Japan 0.

12:52pm: Joe Ravouvou shows his power down the left touch-line and finds Vilimoni Koroi in support for the try. NZ 45-0.

12:47pm: Regan Ware shows a nice left-footed sidestep to beat six Japanese players to open the second-half scoring. NZ 33-0.

From the kick-off, Nareki has his second. NZ 40-0. This almost as impressive as the Fijians.

12:47pm: This looks scary!

12:42pm: Collier caps off a movement that featured about four turnovers, with first one team, then the other threatening to score. NZ 26-0 at half-time.

12:40pm: Andrew Knewstubb finds some space and jogs over untouched, then converts. NZ 21-0.

12:39am: Dylan Collier stands strong in a tackle and offloads for Jona Nareki - he of the crushed testicle - to score under the posts. NZ 14-0.

12:34pm: New Zealand run out onto the field for their opening game against Japan.

Remember, Japan beat them at the Rio Olympics - who didn't? - so payback is in order.

Sione Molia opens the scoring for New Zealand.

12:32pm: Unbelievable brain explosion from Ramos. Scores tied 12-12, Spain hammering the Canadian defence, siren sounds... and Ramos kicks the ball into touch.

Draw. He obviously thought Spain were ahead and is absolutely kicking himself now. 

12:30pm: This match is turning into a humdinger - it's locked at 12-12, with 1m 13s left.

12:23pm: Canada up by just the one try at half-time (5-0) and maybe they should be further ahead, so Spain still with a chance.

12:08pm: Wales score a late consolation try - HATE those consolation tries - but it's too little, too late. Fiji break 50 points with a runaway try to Alosio Sovita Naduva in the final seconds to prevail 54-7.

Spain and Canada are next - they're in New Zealand's pool and Spain are one of the surprise performers on this year's circuit, beating Scotland in the quarter-finals and finishing sixth at Cape Town. That was just two spots behind NZ.

11:57am: Wow, Fiji are 33-0 at half-time, scoring five tries in the process. The tournament goes up a notch when they take the field, with their combination of speed, skill and power.

Aminiasi Tuimaba has two of those tries.

Meanwhile, good news on the Perry Baker injury, if a little unbelievable...

USA Rugby have tweeted that he's passed his HIA, but will now undergo ex-rays.

He must have an extremely hard head - or a very low HIA baseline.

11:49am: Australia hold on for a 17-12 victory on Australia Day, giving them the inside running on a quarterfinal berth. Skipper Lewis Holland scores a vital try and forces the turnover that cements the win in the final seconds.

Champions Fiji are up next against Wales and they're obvious fan favourites wherever they go. Of course, the Welsh were once world champions, but so long ago now (2009), it's almost irrelevant.

11:40am: The Aussies are up 10-5 at half-time, but this game could still go either way. Fiji and Wales are also in this pool, and the All Blacks Sevens cross over with these teams in knockout play.

You'd think defending champions Fiji would top the group, but the second qualifiers might face New Zealand in the quarters, all things going to plan. 

11:29am: Well, the Americans have sounded a warning to their pool rivals, overrunning Tonga 29-7 with three second-half tries, including Tomasin's second.

Scary moment for speedster Perry Baker, who is smashed in a big tackle that involved a head clash. He could be out for the tournament. 

The referee yellow-cards Tana Fotofili for the tackle, which he deems high. Baker wobbles off the field.

Australia vs Argentina are next - this has implications on New Zealand, who cross over with this pool in quarter-finals.

11:14am: USA have two quick tries to Carlin Isles and Stephen Tomasin to lead 17-7 before the break.

11:10am: The Americans score first, but John Tapueluelu produces a try that is only surpassed by the quality of his haircut. The side-line conversion gives Tonga a 7-5 lead.

11:01am: England close to 12-10 through a try to Richard de Carpentier, with 30 seconds remaining - but Tom Mitchell misses the conversion. That could be so costly.

Samoa hold on to win. USA vs Tonga next.

10:50am: Elisapeta Alofipo opens the scoring, as Samoa take the initiative over England. Alatasi Tupou scores from the kick-off to stretch their advantage to 12-0, approaching half-time.

10:40am: South Africa run away with victory in the Battle of Africa, heading off Kenya 29-10. Next up is England vs Samoa - this could be a beauty.

10:29am: Jacob Ojee opens the scoring for Kenya, but South Africa score a trio of tries from Kyle Brown, Werner Kok and Zain David to take a 17-5 lead at the break.

10:22am: South Africa vs Kenya is now underway. 

10:17am: Glenn Bryce goes over in the corner to steal victory for Scotland in the final seconds. It's the greatest comeback of the tournament so far - 26-21 to the Scots.

Next up - South Africa vs Kenya.

10:16am: With less than two minutes left, Scotland have tied the scores at 21-21. These two teams played out a 14-14 draw in pooly play at Dubai, they have history.

10:07am: Hamilton welcomes specatators and players with a traditional Maori welcome, and then the first game begins - Scotland vs France.

Frenchman Thibaud Mazzoleni opens the tournament scoring with a try and his team leads 21-7 at half-time.


9:45am - Not long now till the first match of the day between Scotland and France. The Scots have actually been training alonside Clark Laidlaw and the All Blacks Sevens during the week. 

Kia ora and welcome to live updates from the Hamilton Sevens at FMG Stadium in Waikato.

Today is the first day of the event that will see each of the 16 teams play three times against their respective pool opponents, with day two featuring the Challenge and Cup finals.

The Hamilton Sevens is the third leg for the 2018/19 season, with events staged in Dubai and Cape Town late last year.

The Kiwis won the first leg in Dubai and then finished fourth in South Africa. They've not won the New Zealand title since 2016, when the tournament was based in Wellington.

Fiji are the defending New Zealand Sevens champions, after beating South Africa 27-17 in last year's final. 

New Zealand face Japan in their first match at 12:36pm, then Canada at 4:26pm and they'll round off the night against Spain at 8:36pm. 

The Black Ferns Sevens will also play twice on Saturday. They are taking part in a 'fast four' exhibition format. 

They open their account against England at 1:26pm and France at 5:10pm. On Sunday, they will face China. 

Hamilton Sevens Pools 

Pool A: Fiji, Australia, Argentina, Wales 

Pool B: USA, England, Samoa, Tonga

Pool C: South Africa, Scotland, France, Kenya

Pool D: New Zealand, Spain, Canda, Japan 

For a full list of matches, click here.

TAB Odds: Fiji $2.50, NZ $2.80, South Africa $6.50, USA $7.50

Pre-tourament banter: All Blacks Sevens eye revenge against Japan

The All Black Sevens are determined to leave their mark in Hamilton this weekend with talk the leg could alternate with Fiji from next year.  

Tim Mikkelson returns to side to lead them on his home track and he's got revenge on his mind first game up

It's the first time Mikkelson will face Japan since the Olympic upset and he doesn't want a repeat performance.

"Japan have got that flare, they off load, they cut, they grubber, they're so unpredictable and that's what makes them so good," said Mikkelson.

But the All Blacks Sevens are championing a melting pot of cultures for their recent success at the World Cup and in Dubai.

Their regular ritual is singing verses from each player's heritage.

"At first the boys were a little hesitant, but after a year of doing it the boys love it eh and every year we add songs and songs.

"It's good, we all come from different backgrounds so we want everyone to bring their side in."

This weekend they're motivated by what will hopefully be their first win at home since 2016.

The side sit second in the World Series standings and a top four finish will automatically qualify them for next year's Tokyo Olympics.

"That's the goal is to win the world series, it's not about finishing fourth for us."

Tim Mikkelson is ready to make his mark on his home ground this weekend.


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