Rio Olympics 2016: NZ Sevens take silver

Australia celebrates winning the gold medal against New Zealand in the women's sevens. Photo / Jamie Squire/Getty Images
Australia celebrates winning the gold medal against New Zealand in the women's sevens. Photo / Jamie Squire/Getty Images

The New Zealand women's sevens team have won silver after a gold medal match against Australia at Rio this morning.

The win is the second silver medal for New Zealand after Natalie Rooney claimed her medal for shooting yesterday.

Bay of Plenty's Kelly Brazier was among the team competing this morning.

New Zealand Women's Sevens head coach Sean Horan made his name coaching the Bay of Plenty Steamers for three seasons. He was then given an opportunity to move into sevens and women's sport for the first time in 2012 and has been focusing on Rio.

The Australians went into the tournament as the heavy favourites having dominated the world series this year, winning three of the five stops on the circuit and making the final of one other.

They lived up to their top billing in the final, overwhelming the Kiwi side 24-17, extending their winning streak over New Zealand that dates back to February 2015.

While the scoreline suggested a tight encounter, in reality the Australians were in control for most of the match, holding an unassailable 24-5 lead heading in to the final three minutes of the match after exploiting a one-player advantage following the sin-binning of Portia Woodman, who had been the star of the tournament heading into the game.

Woodman, who scored a try after regulation time was up on the clock to restore some credibility to the scoreline, was inconsolable after the match, crouching beneath the uprights.

Her devastated teammates sobbed openly around her, before Kiwi fans in the crowd performed an emotional haka. The New Zealand side responded with a haka of their own.

The New Zealand side ensured they would be among the first batch of Olympic medallists in women's rugby after crushing Great Britain 25-7 in the semifinal earlier today.

While they could not come away with the ultimate prize, New Zealand captain Sarah Goss said her side are proud to have come away with the silver in what has become a highly competitive women's field.

"For the last four and half years we've focused on coming here and doing New Zealand proud and I still think we've done that," said Goss.

In other action it's been a mixed day for the New Zealand rowers while Luuka Jones sits fourth after the second run in the slalom.

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- NZ Herald

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