NZ cruises into Las Vegas sevens rugby final

Last updated 10:06 27/01/2014
Bryce Heem
Photosport
DOUBLE ACT: Bryce Heem scored twice as New Zealand advanced to the final of the Las Vegas sevens rugby tournament.

Related Links

NZ Sevens player handed nine-match ban

Relevant offers

Sevens

'Under-prepared' NZ sevens will get better: stand-in coach promises Blitzboks give South African rugby something to smile about with Dubai Sevens win South Africa send New Zealand crashing out of Dubai Sevens New Zealand sevens sisters avenge Rio Olympics defeat to win Dubai Sevens Post Gordon Tietjens sevens era opens with two wins in Dubai Australian sevens women perform emergency physiotherapy treatment on teammate NZ women's sevens side schools Ireland, Fiji, France in Dubai tournament NZ women reach Dubai quarterfinals with dominant win over France Zac Guildford hoping to revive his career in Waikato through sevens and club rugby DJ Forbes set for record breaking New Zealand sevens appearance in Dubai

New Zealand will play a South Africa in the final of the Las Vegas sevens after easing past Canada in today's semifinal.

A brace of tries to Bryce Heem and further tries to Scott Curry and Tim Mikkelson helped the Kiwis predictably beat Canada 24-7 to set up a replay of last year's final.

South Africa promise to be a far tougher prospect after blanking Samoa in their semifinal to continue a remarkable defensive performance at Sam Boyd Stadium.

The Bok sevens team have incredibly conceded just one try in the tournament, against Kenya during pool play, and will be warm favourites to win their third Las Vegas title.

However, New Zealand have already faced adversity at the event going into the final day without suspended players George Tilsley and Sam Dickson.

Tilsley will be available for the final after serving a two-match ban for a tip tackle in a pool match against Fiji, though Dickson's suspension for eye-gouging in the same game runs until after the Wellington tournament next month.

Canada made the perfect start in the semifinal when Philip Mack won a turnover and scored the easiest of tries, but New Zealand responded in typical fashion.

Curry found space to tie the scores with a converted try and then, as they have all tournament, the Kiwis scored on the stroke of halftime, Heem trotting under the posts to make it 12-7.

After the break Mikkelson strode in under the posts before Heem guaranteed the win with his second near full-time.

"Canada took it to us and full credit to them," New Zealand coach Gordon Tietjens said after the match.

"The final is another game and replica of last year's final. We have never won in Vegas so we are going to give it a good go."

South Africa had to work hard to beat Samoa, Chris Dry scoring the first try after the halftime hooter for a 7-0 lead.

Sampie Mastriet scored under posts as he pulled a hamstring early in the second before the two sides resumed their hard-hitting defensive efforts.

South Africa thumped New Zealand in last year's final 40-12.

Cup semifinals

New Zealand 24 (Bryce Heem 2, Scott Curry, Tim Mikkelson tries, Gillies Kaka 3 cons) Canada 7 (Philip Mack try, Mack con). HT: 12-7

South Africa 14 (Chris Dry, Sampie Mastriet tries, Cecil Afrika 2 cons) Samoa 0. HT:7-0

Ad Feedback

- Stuff

Special offers
Opinion poll

What effect will a potential ban on booze at Rugby Sevens 2015 have on you?

I'd no longer go ... what's the point?

I'd buy a ticket, with rugby the priority again.

Ban or no ban, I'm still going.

I'd rather watch 'Wheel of Fortune' on a 24/7 loop than 7s.

Vote Result

Related story: Booze ban hovers over sevens

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content