NZ Pool B profile (FRA, ARG, KEN, TON)

(IRB.COM) Tuesday 29 January 2013
 
 NZ Pool B profile (FRA, ARG, KEN, TON)
France have been this season's surprise package, but can they continue their form in Wellington?

We profile the four teams making up Pool B at the 2012 Hertz Sevens in Wellington, round 4 of the HSBC Sevens World Series, with key stats on the team's World Series record and a lowdown on their season so far...

FRANCE

Played:
573
Won:
252 (44.00%)
Tournaments:
106
Debut:
Series 1 - Dubai
Highest Score: 63 - 12 v CHINESE TAIPEI, Hong Kong 2010
 
Final ranking last season:
9th
Coach:
Frederic Pomareli

Arguably the big surprise so far this season - twice Cup semi-finalists already and ranked second in the Series following their runners-up slot in PE. The French have based their new-found focus and hunger on a dogged defence and coach Frederic Pomarel has probably hit all of his season's targets already, so where to from here? They need their little playmaker Terry Bouhraoua at his best and their flyers back outside but most of all they need to continue to walk the line drawn out by their magnificent warrior captain, Vincent Deniau.

MORE INFO (PDF) >>

ARGENTINA

Played: 591
Won: 324 (55.00%)
Tournaments: 109
Debut: Series 1 - Stellenbosch
Highest Score:
73-7 v UAE, Dubai 2011

Final ranking last season:
7th
Coach: Andrés Romagnoli

Argentina will be pleased with the way things have gone so far. A second tier Plate trophy and a fourth-placed finish overall in PE will have pleased coach Andres Romagnoli but he's perhaps one real pace man short of proper Cup contention. Always difficult to beat though.

MORE INFO (PDF) >>

KENYA

Played: 450
Won: 193 (43.00%)
Tournaments: 82
Debut: Series 1 - Dubai
Highest Score:
59 - 0 v SINGAPORE, Singapore 2005

Final ranking last season:
12th
Coach: Mike Friday

Kenya coach Mike Friday is working with some of the most powerful yet elegant athletes in the Sevens game and alongside France they rate as the biggest surprise of the season so far. Almost certainly already safe of the relegation dog fight in London and that will have been priority number one in this toughest of seasons. Collins Injera's return should help them reach the heights of early in the season but overall they have become more consistent with emphasis on shape of game, fitness and excellence in defence.

MORE INFO (PDF) >>

TONGA

Played: 202
Won: 91 (45%)
Tournaments: 37
Debut: Series 1 - Dubai
Highest Score: 56-5 v Hong Kong, Hong Kong WS IX

Final ranking last season: 16th
Coach: Etuate Waqa

The Tongans are the regional qualifiers in Wellington and the only non-core team in the draw, but nobody will relish playing them. On their only run-out so far this season, in the Gold Coast, they beat Scotland in their pool before losing to Spain and USA on day two. However, their coach Etuate Waqa - formerly Fiji's assistant coach - has had longer with them now to work his magic.

MORE INFO (PDF) >>


Wellington, New Zealand

Round 5
7-8 February 2014

Venue: Westpac Stadium
City: Wellington
Capacity: 36,000 

 
Pools
Pool A
TeamPlayedPts
ENG39
RSA37
WAL35
POR33
Pool B
TeamPlayedPts
FIJ39
NZL37
FRA35
ESP33
Pool C
TeamPlayedPts
CAN39
ARG37
SCO34
USA34
Pool D
TeamPlayedPts
AUS39
SAM37
KEN35
TON33
more
Photos
  • South Africa's Philip Snyman is tackled by NZ
  • Sherwin Stowers
  • NZ Sevens - Gillies Kaka