Hamilton Sevens: Black Ferns Sevens triumph, as All Black Sevens suffer shock loss in final

The Black Ferns Sevens have capped off a memorable weekend at Hamilton with a gold-medal-winning performance against the USA in the final on Sunday.

Tournament star and top try-scorer Michaela Blyde grabbed a hat-trick, as the Americans could do little to stop NZ from taking out an emphatic 33-7 victory.

The Black Ferns brushed aside the USA in the final.
The Black Ferns brushed aside the USA in the final. Photo credit: Getty Images

NZ needed just a minute to open their account after Jorja Miller ripped the ball from American hands before Blyde capitalised with another strong run to score.

Jazmin Felix-Hotham made sure her side had more breathing room going into halftime, with a try just minutes later right underneath the goal posts.

NZ wouldn't wait long to further extend their lead after the break, with Felix-Hotham again in the thick of the action, before she found Blyde, who brushed off a would-be tackler and raced away 50 metres to grab her second.

USA would finally break their duck when Cheta Emba stretched her long legs to step out of a tackle and score her team's first try.

Emba's score looked to have sprung the USA into belief, as they forced NZ back on their own tryline before Miller almost scored a sensational against-the-run put-down.

Miller ran the length of the field but knocked-on as she attempted to ground the ball with a cover defender doing just enough to force the error.

But that wouldn't matter, as Blyde scored the easiest of her tries to bring up her hat-trick and all but seal the win.

Black Ferns fan favourite Portia Woodman-Wickliffe would have the last say after NZ won the restart and sent their veteran over in the corner to lock away another title.

Brady Rush came close to stealing a win for the All Blacks Sevens.
Brady Rush came close to stealing a win for the All Blacks Sevens. Photo credit: Getty Images

Meanwhile, the All Blacks Sevens were left heartbroken after a determined fightback from Argentina saw them fall short 14-12 in the final.

In a predictably nervy affair, NZ overcame a Joe Weber yellow card in the first half to lead 12-0 at the break.

Weber was sent to the sin bin after collecting his opposite across the chin with Argentina near the tryline, with only the Pumas player's dipping to the ground sparing him a red.

But his dismissal and injury to Regan Ware did little to stop NZ's charge, with Akuila Rokolisoa opening the scoring after a brilliant run by replacement Roderick Solo.

Solo beat several Argentina defenders, before linking up with a surging Rokolisoa, who showed great strength to hold off the last tackler.

Solo would then get himself on the scoresheet after a scrum win, backing himself against his opposite and taking the outside to dot down and give NZ the 12-0 lead at halftime.

The second half saw both sides struggle to maintain possession before Santiago Alvarez rode the tackle of Sam Dickson to score a try underneath the goalposts.

Argentina went in again just a couple of minutes later, after a scrum win from a penalty saw speedster Marcos Moneta cut back inside and score the try with the conversion giving the underdogs the unlikely lead.

With time up and the hooter gone, NZ were awarded a penalty just inside Argentinian 10m to launch one final attack.

Star of the final, Solo, once again found space, before putting the grubber kick through for Brady Rush to chase with defenders closing in and looked certain to have scored.

He had already started celebrating with his teammates, but after deliberating with the TMO, the referee ruled he had knocked on in his attempted put down much to the despair of Rush and the Hamilton faithful.

Black Ferns Sevens 33 (Blyde 3, Felix-Hotham, Woodman-Wickliffe tries; Nathan-Wong 3 con, Pouri-Lane 1 con) USA 7 (Emba try; Olsen 1 con)

All Blacks Sevens 12 (Rokolisoa, Solo tries; Rokolisoa 1 con) Argentina 14 (Alvarez, Moneta tries; Vera Feld, Wade 1 con)