Rugby Sevens: Black Ferns Sevens crowned champions at Vancouver, All Blacks Sevens stumble in final

Black Ferns Sevens have defended their Vancouver title with a one-sided 35-19 win over France in the final.

Lead by a Portia Woodman-Wickliffe hattrick, the NZ women ran in five tries to three to claim their first tournament win of the 2023/24 world series with an undefeated run in Canada.

The gold medals will hang alongside the silvers they won t Dubai and bronzes from Cape Town, closing the gap in the overall standings behind leaders Australia to six points.

Black Ferns Sevens celebrate with a haka.
Black Ferns Sevens celebrate with a haka. Photo credit: Getty Images

The Ferns made an early statement through Woodman-Wickliffe, who added another dot to her tally, as the leading tryscorer in women's sevens, latching on to a slick long pass from Risi Pouri-Lane to go 50 metres clear and give her side the early lead.

The French responded immediately, as Anne-Cecile Ciofani cut through the defence to square the scoreline, before Michael Blyde danced past weak defence to restore the Ferns' seven-point advantage. 

With the first half expiring, Jorja Miller produced a massive left-foot step to break the line and claim New Zealand's third try, before Woodman-Wickliffe reeled in a Tyla King crossfield kick in acres of space to give her side an imposing 28-7 halftime lead.

France had to score first in the second stanza and Valentine Lothoz ensured exactly that, scooping a loose ball near the NZ line to run in an easy try.

Another surging Miller run created space for Woodman-Wickliffe to torch the French defence on the outside and run in her third try of the match.

With three minutes remaining, Manaia Nuku was shown a yellow card for an intentional knockdown, but ultimately, it was of no consequence, with France running in no more than a late consolation try.

The outcome wasn't as favourable for All Blacks Sevens in their first final of the season, comfortably beaten by red-hot Argentina 36-12.

The Kiwis opened the contest with a quick double strike. Joe Webber was on hand to reel in a superb offload from tournament standout Cody Vai, before he won the resulting restart with a tap-back to find Brady Rush and take a 12-0 lead.

Marcos Moneta streaked clear 70 metres to provide the Argentinian response, backed up by another from close-range to Luciano Gonzalez to send the teams into the sheds deadlocked at 12-12.

The Pumas dominated the second half, with Matias Osadczuk running in a hattrick of tries to seal Argentina's third straight tournament title and extend their overall lead in the standings to a whopping 24 points.

New Zealand's second podium finish of the season, after their bronze at Dubai, the silver lifts them from sixth to fourth on the ladder.

Black Ferns Sevens 35 (Woodman-Wickliffe 3, Miller, Blyde tries; King 3 conversions, Pouri-Lane conversion) France 19 (Ciofani, Lothoz, Pelle tries; Drouin 2 conversions)

Argentina 36 (Osadczuk 3, Graziano, Gonzalez, Moneta tries; Wade 3 conversions) All Blacks Sevens 12 (Webber, Rush tries; Rokolosia conversion)