Australia takes sixth in Japan

· Womens - Kitakyushu
by Rugby Australia

Australia has taken sixth place in round four of the HSBC Women’s Sevens World Series in Kitakyushu, Japan on Sunday afternoon. 

The Qantas Australian Women’s Sevens side finished strongly but ultimately went down to New Zealand, 26-34, having fallen in the quarter final to England, but accounting for Ireland in the fifth-place semi-final earlier in the day. 

Qantas Australian Women’s Sevens Head Coach, John Manenti said: “I was really impressed with the way the team bounced back after a tough loss to England in the quarter finals. 

“England played with aggression and they deserved their victory. 

“Our fightback against New Zealand also really impressed me and that showed what we can do with the ball, when we have it. 

“The performance of Emma Tonegato, Charlotte Caslick, Lily Dick and Mahalia Murphy across the tournament was really impressive and their work rate was second to none. 

"Charlotte was world class all weekend, with and without the football.

“We’ll take our lessons from this tournament and get ready for the final two rounds of the HSBC Sevens World Series.”

The next round of the HSBC Women’s Sevens World Series will take place in Langford Canada, kicking off on May 11. 

Australia 7 was defeated by England 21 

It was a grinding first half between the two sides as the Aussie 7s fought hard against England in the quarter final. Neither team was able to establish clear domination, but England pressured the women in gold but holding them down inside their 22. England were rewarded for their efforts with a try through the middle of the field. Sariah Paki was sent to the sin bin allowing England to heap more pressure on the Aussie 7s before the half time break. The defence from Australia kept England at bay leaving the score at 0-7. 

The second half saw England continue their domination of possession and territory with the Aussie 7s unable to get out of their half. Two second half tries to England in the second half, ended any chance of an Australian fightback as England continued to put pressure on Australia. In the final acts of the match, Australia was able score through Emma Tonegato who cut back inside to put the ball down next to the posts. 

Australia 29 defeated Ireland 7 

Australia got off to a strong start against Ireland, scoring inside the first two minutes with Emma Sykes showing off her ball skills to score and take a 5-0 lead. Ireland struck back to re-take the lead shortly after, but it would be the last time they held the advantage. Australia worked hard in possession with some excellent hands from the Aussie 7s putting over Emma Tonegato in the corner. 

The second half saw Tonegato continue her try scoring form with a string fend brushing away the Irish defence to extend Australia’s lead to 17-7. The women in gold continued to probe the Irish defence, barely putting a foot wrong as Ellia Green barnstormed through the line at pace, offloading to Charlotte Caslick who made Australia’s lead insurmountable. A final try to Sariah Paki sealed the deal for Australia and ensured that they would progress to the fifth place final.    

Australia 26 was defeated by New Zealand 34 

A fired up Black Ferns outfit put on a masterclass of Sevens Rugby in the first half with New Zealand jumping out to a 0-12 lead. Australia was unable to regain possession as New Zealand suffocated the Aussie defence with strong runs and good supporting lines. The Black Ferns would score three more tries before the break to have complete control of the fifth place final (0-29). 

The second half saw New Zealand gain an extra woman advantage with Emma Tonegato sin binned, reducing Australia to six women. The Australians refused to go down wondering, with a Charlotte Caslick creating space out wide for Mahalia Murphy who sprinted away untouched to score underneath the posts, lowering the gap to 7-34. This awoke an Aussie fightback as the Aussie 7s created space and pushed against New Zealand’s defence. Ellia Green made history by scoring her 100th try for the Aussie 7s on the HSBC Sevens World Series taking the score to 14-34. Emma Tonegato came back with her speedskates on, blitzing the defence to offload to Emma Sykes who scored underneath the posts. With the clock ticking down to full time, Australia refused to give up, Charlotte Caslick regathering the ball off the kick off to run away and score, 26-34. Australia regathered off the kick off, and fought hard for the final seconds of the match, but New Zealand had done enough to win the match and take fifth place.