Rugby sevens: NZ reach final in Vancouver

By Campbell Burnes

Tim Mikkelson crossed over for New Zealand. Photo / Getty
Tim Mikkelson crossed over for New Zealand. Photo / Getty

The All Blacks Sevens are through to the Cup final in Vancouver to face South Africa after a hard-earned 28-19 semifinal victory over Australia.

New Zealand raced to a 14-0 lead and looked to be in control via two tries to Tim Mikkelson and Gillies Kaka, both exploding through gaps. But errors led to Australia hitting back through Con Foley and Henry Hutchison, the latter requiring TMO assistance to judge that his legs were in the air over the sideline and not grounded in the Kaka tackle.

Australia applied the pressure early in the second spell until a Sione Molia double, busting some weak defence, administered the knockout blow.

Quade Cooper and Liam Messam were both injected late for their respective sides, Messam with just 29 seconds to play as Tietjens continues to operate with caution with the All Black.

James Stannard cleverly grubbered to himself for Australia's final try, but it was too late.

"We had to guts it out against a good Australia team," says Tietjens. "Getting off to a good start makes a big difference. We let them back in the game, which is a concern, but pulled away at the end."

South Africa defeated Fiji 31-19 in the other semifinal, an enthralling encounter.
Kickoff for the final is 2pm NZT.

New Zealand 28 (Sione Molia 2, Tim Mikkelson, Gillies Kaka tries; Kaka 4 con) Australia 19 (Con Foley, Henry Hutchison, James Stannard tries; Stannard 2 con) HT: 14-12

- NZ Herald

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