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Aussie Men through to Hong Kong Sevens quarters

  
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3/25/2012
By AAP Media Unit


Australia have qualified for the knock-out stages of the World Sevens Series in Hong Kong despite a 22-5 loss to Fiji on Saturday.

The Aussies finished second in Pool C after wins over Scotland (29-14) and France (31-10) before going down to Fiji.

Australia have now set up a quarter-final clash with England, who finished second in Pool A after posting a 14-12 defeat to Samoa following wins over Argentina (19-10) and Kenya (21-17).

The Wallabies are sitting joint sixth in the overall Series standings, and have won five times in Hong Kong, but they are looking to end a long drought, with the last victory coming back in 1988.

Traditional favourites with the Hong Kong crowd - and the most successful side of this sevens, winning a record 12 times - the Fijians kicked-off with a rout against Scotland then barely shifted into second gear against France 26-12.

And even against their strongest group opponent Australia, who have shown some blistering form on the pitch this weekend, the Fijians were too good and qualified top of Pool C.

Sevens masters New Zealand eased into the knock-out stages of the series, but strong shows from Fiji and Samoa are keeping the Kiwis cautiously confident.

Series leaders New Zealand, looking for their 11th success in Hong Kong and tenth overall Series win, ran the show in their group matches, dispatching with Wales 24-7, and then powering past usually formidable South Africa, 19-10.

Keeping all the top teams on their toes are the impressive Samoans, fifth in overall standings and winners of the last leg in Vegas. They overwhelmed Argentina 27-0 in one of the rare blow-out scores of the group rounds.

For the quarter-finals on Sunday, Wales face the mighty New Zealand, Samoa go head to head with South Africa, Fiji play against Argentina and Australia take on England.
 

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