Aussies to compete for top pool spot

Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

Australia has secured a Cup quarter-final berth at the first Sydney Sevens, after a 26-12 win over Canada.

The nerves that showed in the opening match looked to have subsided the second time around and a blistering run by Lewis Holland put the Aussies 5-0 in front early in the piece.

Canada responded just shy of half-time but Holland’s second sprint run put the Aussies back in front.

Holland nearly had the second Aussie hat-trick of the day but opted to pass outside to Henry Speight, who clinched his second World Series try, almost immediately after coming on.

As for why he opted to give the ball to Speight, Holland gave a pretty simple answer.

“I was pretty smoked by that time,” he said.

“Henry was fresh and you always take the easy options in Sevens.

“If you try and go by yourself then you can come unstuck and you could be chasing the same bloke down the field who’s chasing you down the field."

With the buzz around the team the most intense they’ve ever experienced, Holland said they had begun to settle into the day.

“I think having the home crowd (was a bit different), we don’t get many cheers it’s usually boos,” he said.

“The first game (there) was definitely nerves and then going into that game the nerves had definitely settled and focus on our own game.”

The Australian’s final pool game will be the most anticipated of the opening day, against the undefeated New Zealand Sevens.

New Zealand beat Portugal 40-5 in their second pool match of the day, meaning the trans-Tasman clash will decide the top pool spot.

All of the Cup quarter-finalists have now been decided, with South Africa and Kenya through from Pool B, Fiji and Argentina from Pool C and England and USA from Pool D.

Australia will play one of either England or the USA in their final eight match.