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HONG KONG - Fiji dashed New Zealand's rugby sevens World Cup title defence at the last hurdle, winning a one-sided final 29-19 last night.

History repeated for the emotional Fijians, who become the first two-time winners of the World Cup in its fourth staging.

They won it when it was last in Hong Kong eight years ago and once again at the heart of their triumph was their legendary playmaker Waisale Serevi, now 36.

Against a New Zealand team fighting a mounting injury toll, Serevi steered his side around the park brilliantly in the five-tries-to-three win.

The scoreline flattered New Zealand, who scored the last two tries after the result was decided.

New Zealand were without a crucial pair, playmaker Orene Ai'i and forward Tafai Ioasa, both injured out of the final in earlier matches yesterday.

Veteran halfback Amasio Valence battled on with a pinched nerve in his shoulder that has dogged him throughout the tournament.

NZ failed to hold on to possession and missed too many tackles, which proved fatal against their faster opponents.

Fiji scored the first two tries, through Jone Daunivucu and Serevi.

The second was a candidate for try of the tournament, the length-of-the field team effort ending with a spectacular reverse pass from Apolosi Satala.

Neither was converted and Josh Blackie's try brought the scoreline back to 10-7.

But Fiji took a 17-7 lead to the break thanks to a Semisi Naevo try.

Vilimoni Delasau extended the advantage early in the second spell before a flying Sireli Bobo all but wrapped up the result.

Replacement Isaia Toeava scored New Zealand's second and then Vilimoni Delasau was sinbinned for taking out Rudi Wulf.

Wulf crossed in the final minute for his eighth try of the tournament.

Serevi's impact could not be understated as he helped his team to their first sevens title for more than two years, the period of time he has been away from the game. The result was also a triumph for coach Wayne Pivac, a New Zealander.

NZ have been the dominant force in world sevens for the past eight years, so this result ends a remarkable run for New Zealand coach Gordon Tietjens and his team.

Since failing to win the World Cup in Hong Kong eight years ago, New Zealand have claimed every major sevens prize on offer.

Earlier, Samoa beat Portugal to win the plate final and Italy downed Canada to win the bowl.

- NZPA