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By ARU Media Unit
The Australian Men’s Sevens have opened Rugby World Cup Sevens 2013 in Moscow with a 21-0 win over Spain.
The win in their first match of the tournament is a boost for Australia, with Tunisia and France still to play in their pool.
Both sides tested the waters for the first three minutes before a penalty against Spain on halfway awarded the Australians an attacking opportunity.
Con Foley took the tap and the ball was quickly shifted wide to Queensland Reds flyer Luke Morahan who made 20 metres before finding scrumhalf Matt Lucas, of the NSW Waratahs, with a nice one-handed pass.
Lucas was brought down just short of the try line, but released the ball and regathered before diving over the line to open the scoring. Lucas converted his own try to take his side to a 7-0 lead with just three minutes played.
The Australians had extended their lead by seven before the end of the half, when Super Rugby draft Bernard Foley of the NSW Waratahs found space from nothing, cantering to the line and converting his own try to take his side to a 14-0 lead at half time.
Both sides remained scoreless for much of the second half, but solid defensive work rewarded the Australians again late in the game, when Lewis Holland forced a penalty at the ruck five metres from the Spanish try line.
Holland took a quick tap from the penalty and dove over for the third try. Lucas converted to give his side a 21-0 lead.
Spain had a late chance to close the deficit in the final seconds of the game, but covering defence from replacement wing Shannon Walker closed the play down, taking the attacking player into touch and ending the game to give Australia a comfortable win.
The Australian Men’s Sevens now face Tunisia at 5:56pm (AEST) on Saturday 29 June, followed by France at 12:10am (AEST) on Sunday 30 June.
All matches will be streamed live at www.irb.com.
The final day of the tournament will be streamed live on www.irb.com and broadcast live on Fox Sports 3HD.
Australia 21 – Spain 0
Australia tries – Matt Lucas, Bernard Foley, Lewis Holland.
Conversions – Lucas (2), Foley.
Australian Men’s Sevens Rugby World Cup Sevens squad
Northern Suburbs, NSW
Canberra Royals, ACT
NSW Waratahs, Super Rugby
University of Queensland, QLD
Queanbeyan Whites, NSW
Ed Jenkins (c)
Sydney University, NSW
Queensland Reds, Super Rugby
Gold Coast, QLD
Avoca Beach, NSW
Australian Men’s Sevens Rugby World Cup Sevens staff
Strength and conditioning coach
Qantas Australian Sevens player Shannon Walker will play his first tournament in over a year when he lines up for the National Indigenous side at this weekend’s National Sevens Championships in Narrabeen, Sydney.