STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Rugby World Cup Sevens: New Zealand wins historic title

New Zealand became the first side to win back-to-back Rugby World Cup Sevens titles after defeating England 33-12 in ...

Posted: Jul 23, 2018 1:24 PM
Updated: Jul 23, 2018 1:24 PM

New Zealand became the first side to win back-to-back Rugby World Cup Sevens titles after defeating England 33-12 in San Francisco Sunday.

It capped a brilliant weekend for New Zealand rugby as the Black Ferns had the previous day taken the women's title with victory over France. Both teams celebrated in Kiwi style by performing the haka after the trophy lifts.

NZ beats England 33-12 in World Cup final

Record third title for All Blacks Sevens

The All Blacks Sevens entered the competition seeded third behind Fiji and South Africa -- both of whom suffered semifinal defeats -- but came through with victories over Russia (29-5), France (12-7) and Fiji (17-22) en route to Sunday's showpiece.

Two tries from Sione Molia gave his side an early lead in the final before a score from Mike Ellery kept England in touch. But three further tries in the second period handed New Zealand the title, the first side to win the World Cup on three occasions.

"It's massive," said co-captain Tim Mikkelson. "We knew coming in it was going to be tough. We nearly got knocked out by France but raised it against Fiji. Credit to the coaching staff and the coach who brought the boys together.

"Both men and women train in same place and they put pressure on us by winning their final. Credit to England who played amazing this weekend and we're humbled to get the victory."

READ: Blacks Ferns win back-to-back World Cup titles

New Zealand's results in the Sevens World Series -- the sport's ten-tournament international competition -- have been mixed with their sole victory last season coming in Cape Town back in December.

But Clark Laidlaw's men have found another gear on the big stage by adding the World Cup title to the Commonwealth gold they won on Australia's Gold Coast in April.

Record crowds

Over 100,000 fans flocked to San Francisco's AT&T Park over the weekend, which had been converted from ballpark to rugby pitch for the event.

It was a record-breaking crowd for a rugby event in the US, a country no stranger to the sport given the longstanding popularity of the Las Vegas Sevens.

READ: Why are the All Blacks so good?

There were 84 games over the weekend, with 24 men's and 16 women's teams from five continents competing in the new knockout format.

Few would have predicted the men's final -- a repeat of the 2013 event in Moscow -- with Olympic champion Fiji and World Series winner South Africa in the semifinal lineup.

"A lot of people wrote us off coming into this, they didn't even give us a shout," said England captain Tom Mitchell, whose side defeated host USA and South Africa on the way to the final.

"To come away as world champions is what we so desperately wanted which means it hurts now.

"There were a couple of tries that were probably a bit soft. You've got to make teams like New Zealand work for their scores, which we didn't. We gave ourselves a little bit too much work to do."

There were at least two teams from five continents in the men's competition -- a testament to the global reach of rugby sevens -- with trophies being won by teams from Oceania, Europe, and South America.

The Chilean Condors overcame Hong Kong 20-7 to win the Bowl final, while Ireland continued its outstanding recent form by defeating Kenya, Wales and Australia en route to lifting the Challenge trophy.

Visit cnn.com/rugby for more news and videos

Teams now take an extended break from the sevens circuit, which for the men resumes in Dubai at the end of November.

West Lafayette
Partly Cloudy
67° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 67°
Kokomo
Cloudy
62° wxIcon
Hi: 62° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 62°
Rensselaer
Partly Cloudy
64° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 64°
Fowler
Partly Cloudy
67° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 67°
Williamsport
Clear
68° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 68°
Crawfordsville
Clear
66° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 66°
Frankfort
Partly Cloudy
66° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 66°
Delphi
Partly Cloudy
66° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 66°
Monticello
Partly Cloudy
66° wxIcon
Hi: 67° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 66°
Logansport
Mostly Cloudy
61° wxIcon
Hi: 61° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 61°
Improving weather with a warm-up ahead....
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 941120

Reported Deaths: 15315
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1282511983
Lake633041097
Allen53609758
Hamilton43827447
St. Joseph41906590
Elkhart33545490
Vanderburgh30383448
Tippecanoe26820249
Johnson23609417
Hendricks22250341
Porter21737346
Clark17409229
Madison17366384
Vigo16108281
Monroe14466191
LaPorte14311239
Delaware14070221
Howard13865272
Kosciusko11418135
Hancock10841165
Warrick10674177
Bartholomew10542168
Floyd10430205
Wayne9959226
Grant9130204
Morgan8865160
Boone8389111
Dubois7710123
Dearborn762289
Henry7608130
Noble7413101
Marshall7362128
Cass7176117
Lawrence6957153
Shelby6584111
Jackson656785
Gibson6156107
Harrison603786
Huntington600195
Montgomery5805105
DeKalb574291
Knox5494104
Miami542488
Putnam536768
Clinton533665
Whitley524953
Steuben497268
Wabash483592
Jasper479160
Jefferson470092
Ripley454277
Adams444068
Daviess4169108
Scott405865
White391857
Clay390857
Greene388392
Decatur385296
Wells384983
Fayette374278
Posey359941
Jennings353156
Washington332047
LaGrange321375
Spencer317835
Fountain316555
Randolph312888
Sullivan307449
Owen283863
Starke280064
Fulton277553
Orange275859
Jay254837
Perry251652
Carroll243729
Franklin239338
Rush234130
Vermillion233250
Parke219820
Tipton209655
Pike207639
Blackford168334
Pulaski163551
Crawford146018
Newton144345
Benton142516
Brown135346
Martin128217
Switzerland125810
Warren114616
Union96911
Ohio79711
Unassigned0479

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events