Australia’s Women’s Sevens have survived a scare from Canada in Atlanta to qualify for their first Cup final in North America.
The Aussies have had mixed history in the North American tournaments but have a chance to right that with their 26-14 win over Canada setting up a decider against New Zealand.
Australia sped out to an early lead,with tries to Emma Tonegato and Charlotte Caslick but a late first half try to Canada kept the margin to just seven at the break.
Tonegato bookended the match, with the first and last tries for Australia, taking her tally to 10 for the weekend and continuing a rich vein of form in the American tournament.
The Canadians’ momentum grew after the half nullified Australia’s lead, drawing scores level with five minutes left.
It was then that Australia’s class showed, as Emilee Cherry slipped through the defence to put Australia back in front.
As critical as Cherry’s try was, a try-saving tackle from Shannon Parry might have been the game-deciding move.
Canada looked certain to score the sixth try of the match before Parry pushed Karen Paquin into touch just short of the try line.
Less than a minute later Parry kick-started an attack that gave Tonegato that 10th try of the tournament and the game-sealer.
Australia will take on New Zealand in the Cup final at 10:11am Sunday AEST, streamed live on worldrugby.org.