Hamilton 7s

Fiji, Samoa 7s fail to fire in Hamilton

New Zealand did the double on home soil as the All Blacks Sevens and Black Ferns Sevens won the men's and women's titles to extend their respective leads atop the overall World Series standings.

Fiji were attempting to win a third straight title in Hamilton but, after opening day wins against Samoa (19-12) and Australia (19-12), Gareth Baber's side were upset by Argentina 26-10 in their final round robin clash and were denied a place in the knockout rounds on points differential.

New Zealand pass through pool play unbeaten

For the Black Ferns, victory represented success at the first official world-series event form women in New Zealand.

They secured their semi-final spot with a 38-21 win over Fiji in their final pool game on Sunday morning, with Stacey Fluhler scoring a try hat-trick and Michaela Blyde a double.

Late in their semi, they trailled France, and needed tries from Fluhler and Kelly Brazier, both converted, to emerge 19-7 winners. 

Fiji 7s coach questions new format in Hamilton

With New Zealand also hosting an official leg of the Women's World Series for the first time the men's competition has been cut back, with the four pool winners now advancing directly to the semi-finals.

The elimination of the quarter final stage, means every pool game is effectively a must win, with Fiji drawn to face Samoa, Argentina and Australia this weekend.

Baber wasn't sold on the new format.

"It's a bit strange," he said. "It wouldn't be what my thought process would be in terms of a tournament for certain.

'The pressure is on' - Hamilton readies for World Rugby Sevens

Twenty-eight teams will take part in the first fully integrated men's and women's international tournament to be played in New Zealand.

Both the All Blacks Sevens and the Black Ferns Sevens teams come to Hamilton victorious from the previous round held at the end of last year in Cape Town.

All of the 28 teams have now arrived in Hamilton.

The teams have spread out around the city making time between training to promote the game and visit hospitals, rest homes and get involved with younger players.

Fiji team departs for Hamilton 7s today

Head Coach, Gareth Baber says his players have responded well during the past few weeks of training, they have thrown some solid sessions at them and ultimately now they need to move ahead.

He says the players understand what they need to do and how hard they have to work on the field.

He further says discipline is one of the other areas they have been focusing on, with changing habits and behaviors which have existed for a long period of time.

Experienced Fiji 7s team ready for Hamilton

Livai Ikanikoda returns to the team for his first tournament of the season and was expected to bring his signature strength and leadership to the side while Asaeli Tuivuaka has earnt re-selection and hoped to inject more physicality and power into the team.

In the forwards, Kavekini Tabu retains his position after making his debut in Dubai.

Baber also holds high expectations for Sevu Mocenacagi, Josua Vakurunabili and Apenisa Cakaubalavu.

Hamilton 7s to have no quarterfinals

A new format has been placed by World Rugby for the tournament next month where teams who finish first in their pools will directly qualify to the semifinals.

Fiji who is the defending Hamilton 7s champion will need to win all their pool matches to keep their hopes of retaining their title alive.

Fiji is pooled with Australia, Argentina, and Samoa.

Cape Town 7s champions New Zealand are in Pool A with Scotland, USA and Wales while South Africa are in Pool B with Kenya, England and Japan.

France has been drawn with Ireland, Canada and Spain in Pool C.