February 23rd, 2024

Canadian rugby women beaten by Britain at HSBC Perth Sevens tournament

By The Canadian Press on January 27, 2024.

PERTH, Australia – Canada’s rugby sevens women lost a tight Cup quarterfinal 7-0 to Britain at the HSBC Perth Sevens on Saturday, dropping into placement play.

The Canadian women had lost 14-12 to Britain in Pool A action Friday, bouncing back later in the day to defeat South Africa 26-7. That 1-1-0 record earned them a trip to the final eight after Series leader Australia was upset by the British.

Canada closed out pool play Saturday with a 31-14 loss to Australia with Asia Hogan-Rochester and Chloe Daniels scoring tries for the Canadians, who trailed 19-7 at the half.

Britain’s Ellie Boatman scored the lone try in the quarterfinal win over Canada.

Britain will face Ireland in one women’s semifinal while Australia takes on the U.S. in the other. The Australian women downed New Zealand 24-14 in the quarterfinals, ending the Black Ferns’ 20-match win streak on Australian soil

The Canadian men, beaten 24-7 by South Africa and 29-5 by Argentina on Friday, finished last in Pool A after opening Saturday with a 33-12 loss to Spain. Jack Carson and Thomas Isherwood scored tries for the Canadian men, who trailed 19-7 at the break.

Canada was then beaten 26-21 by New Zealand in the ninth-place playoff after a fierce second-half comeback fell just short.

Trailing 19-0 at the break Canada pulled ahead 21-19 on converted tries by Jake Thiel, Kalin Sager and Matt Percillier. But Fehi Fineanganofo’s last-minute converted try gave the All Blacks the win.

With time running out, New Zealand won the ball in a counter-ruck and Fineanganofo split the Canadian defence, scoring under the posts with Percillier hanging on but failing to stop him.

The Canadian men will now face Britain in the 11th-place playoff.

The men’s semifinals pitted Ireland against Argentina and Fiji against Australia.

The Australian event is the third of eight stops on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, which has been rebranded as the HSBC SVNS this season. The next tournament is the Feb. 23-25 HSBC SVNS Vancouver at B.C. Place Stadium.

The Canadian women went to Perth fifth in the overall standings after placing fourth in Cape Town and sixth in the Series-opening stop in Dubai. Britain stands ninth and South Africa 11th.

The Canadian men stood ninth after finishing 12th in Dubai and seventh in Cape Town.

The slimmed-down sevens circuit features seven regular-season events, each featuring men’s and women’s competition, plus a grand final with promotion and relegation at stake.

After Vancouver, the teams go to Los Angeles, Hong Kong and Singapore before wrapping up in Madrid from May 31 to June 2.

The Canadian women finished ninth overall last season with sixth place in both Vancouver and Hong Kong their best showing.

The men’s field has been cut to 12 core teams from 16 to match the women’s setup as well as the Olympic competition.

Canada retained its core team status in dramatic fashion, defeating Kenya 12-7 in the relegation playoff final in May in London thanks to a last-minute try by Alex Russell. The Canadian men were forced into the playoff after finishing 14th in the season standings.

The Perth tournament is taking place at HBF Park, where Canada beat Ireland 2-1 at the FIFA Women’s World Cup last summer.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 27, 2024

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