Defending HSBC Sevens World Series champions New Zealand begin their defence with three victories in the Gold Coast Sevens, while hosts Australia are also through to the quarter-finals.
- Sunday's fixtures at Skilled Park in Robina and Pool standings
- New Zealand, South Africa, Australia and Wales remain unbeaten
- Fiji coach Ben Ryan set to face ex-team England in Cup last eight
- Hat-tricks from England's Dan Bibby and Fiji's Ilai Tinai
- Join us for the an exciting finale from 0945 on Sunday morning
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And there endth a fascinating day of end-to-end running rugby, more thrills and spills than our average computer game. Do join us for tomorrow's finale - can Fiji retain their title they won 12 months ago or will the mighty New Zealand sweep all in her path? We'll find out on Sunday.
A final word from Ed Jenkins, Australia's captain: "[It was a ] Very slow start to the day, looking back at the video from earlier against Scotland we didn't have them for the whole match, but against the Argentines and Samoa we had them for the full 14 minutes."
Australia 12-0 Samoa
Is that the try that seals Australia's path into the quarter-finals against Kenya? Winger Shannon Walker issues a meaty hand-off as he sprints 40m at full pelt to run in his second try of the day. Con Foley makes a superb try-saving tackle to prevent Samoa Taloa from crossing over and a tired Australian side maintain their unbeaten start to their home tournament.
Plenty at stake in this match - the loser faces 11-time World Series champions New Zealand. Some seriously tired bodies trudging around the Skilled Park arena, just over four minutes to go and Australia still lead 7-0 against Samoa.
Australia 7-0 Samoa
A scrappy first seven minutes so far, Ed Jenkins' early scorer separates these two unbeaten sides.
It's our final match of an absorbing day one - and Australia take the lead through captain Ed Jenkins against Samoa - 7-0 the hosts lead.
Wales 22-21 Fiji
You better believe what Amanda said, a certain try-scoring opportunity thwarted by a savvy punched timed to perfection. But Wales aren't to be perturbed as the tenacious Chris Knight adds a second score before captain Adam Thomas slides in the corner as Wales play the advantage. Now then, can last year's tournament winners get back into this game? Sakiusa Nadruku touches down on the hooter but there's not enough time at the restart - and what a win for Wales!
Fiji unable to keep up with the Jones' #GoldCoast7s— Steve Lenthall (@Steve Lenthall) 12/10/2013 11:47
Pure genius from Fiji! Punched the ball loose to save a certain try #GoldCoast7s— Amanda Singh (@Amanda Singh) 12/10/2013 11:42
Fiji 14-12 Wales
A typically unpredictable, Fijian move conjured from nowhere as Benito Masilevu spots the slightest of gaps before prising open a huge hole to score in the corner, brilliantly convertng his own kick before skipper Osea Kolinisau extends the lead with yet another typically bullish move from nowhere. However, Chris Knight gives Wales hope as Fiji are reduced to six men for a disciplinary transgression. More scores to come in the second half?
Neil Powell, South Africa coach, on a good first day at the office: "It's been a great day, three wins from three, but if we don't come back tomorrow and play like we did tonight then it counts for nothing. I think there is a lot of character, only coming in two nights ago to come and play like this I am really proud of them on day one."
Play is held up as Wales' Will Thomas is taken off the pitch following a shuddering challenge just a minute ino the match, our best wishes are with the young man. Play restarts with just under six minutes on the clcok.
RT @siasduplessis: Blitzbokke comfortably bt England 22 - 14 to top Pool B at the #GoldCoast7s into Cup quarters to face 2nd place in Pool …— Yandisa (@Yandisa) 12/10/2013 11:28
@willthomas took a big hit and is down on the field just 1 min into the match @WelshRugbyUnion v @fijirugby #sevens #rugby— Behind The Ruck (@Behind The Ruck) 12/10/2013 11:27
South Africa 22-14 England
The Blitzbokke blast through England's tiring defence; first Justin Geduld with a nifty sidestep dissecting England through the middle before Kyle Brown adds the fourth try, South Africa's 29th victory over England in the World Series very much within sight. England have the last say with a sweeping move from one end of the pitch to the other as James Rodwell touches down under the posts, but way too late.
SOUTH AFRICA 17 vs ENGLAND 7 after 8 min. Try converted by Justin Geduld for BLITZBOKKE #GoldCoast7s #Blitzbokke #RSAvsENG— RUGBY15.co 1⃣5⃣ (@RUGBY15.co 1⃣5⃣) 12/10/2013 11:13
South Africa 10-7 England
Tom Mitchell's second-minute score is cancelled out by Stephan Dippenaar before Cornal Hendricks, last season's joint-leading try scorer on the Gold Coast with eight, bundles over from close range, just when it looked as if England would hold on to a half-time advantage. Who's going to lose their winning run?
SOUTH AFRICA 0 vs ENGLAND 7 after 1 min. Try converted by Christian Lewis-Pratt for ENGLAND #GoldCoast7s #Blitzbokke #RSAvsENG— RUGBY15.co 1⃣5⃣ (@RUGBY15.co 1⃣5⃣) 12/10/2013 11:04
Two more unbeaten teams in the mix - England and South Africa. Who's going to lose their 100% record? We'll find out in about 15 minutes...
NewZealand have mastered all our game tactics! Back to the drawing board boys! #Kenya7s #Kenya7s #Shujaa7s #TeamKenya #GoldCoast7s— Jacques! (@Jacques!) 12/10/2013 11:02
New Zealand 24-0 Kenya
Even the great Willy would struggle turning this game around Sylvestah, New Zealand, with four players with over 100 Series tries under their belts (there are seven in total playing in the Gold Coast) it's impossible to stop the Black tide in full flow. A masterclass of contact offloading sees Joe Webber touch down for his second try of the match and his country's 14th of the tournament, make that 15th as Waisake Naholo registers the fifth and final try. Who can beat last year's champions?
It is a time like this that I miss Willy Ambaka. #GoldCoast7s— Sylvestah Yehgon (@Sylvestah Yehgon) 12/10/2013 10:54
New Zealand 19-0 Fiji
First blood to the All Blacks as Joe Webber and Ambrose Curtis tear up the so-far untested Kenyan defence, which has missed an eye-watering five tackles so far. You can't do that sort of thing against the All Blacks, that usually only means one thing. And here comes try number three as DJ Forbes conjures yet another try-scoring opportunity, this time for Scott Curry.
Joe Webber with a try for New Zealand, Cama as usual kick on point.. NZL 7-0 #Kenya7s #Goldcoast7s #fb— Katami Michelle (@Katami Michelle) 12/10/2013 10:44
In terms of history, Kenya have only beaten New Zealand three times in 15 seasons of the HSBC Sevens World Series, that's a total of 35 matches. The last time these two faced up to each other was in last season's finale in London, where the All Blacks ran out narow 7-0 winners.
Santiago Gomez Cora, Sevens' all-time leading try scorer, is finding life as a coach a tad stressful. The Argentina boss says of the Scotland victory: "I didn't enjoy it, but it's my first win. I thought it would be more relaxed as a coach than a player, but no! We know this kind of thing can happen, it is a new team, the idea is to grow and grow, step by step. This is our situation, we have to play in Bowl and learn how to grow in different situations."
After the warm up games against Tonga&USA we start the tournament against Nz. This is the real test. let evaluation begin! #GoldCoast7s— Sam Dusetuoir (IV) (@Sam Dusetuoir (IV)) 12/10/2013 10:31
Vuvuzela-check Loud singing voice - check Kenya colours - check Bring on NZ!! #Kenya7s #GoldCoast7s @KenyaRugby247 @ChirryC #Kayumbeeeet!— Wangeci (@Wangeci) 12/10/2013 10:31
Argentina 21-19 Scotland
Substitute James Johnstone makes an immediate impact as he snakes into the corner for a touchdown, but his score can't be converted. So we're set for an intriguing final two minutes - but just as Scotland are within sniffing distance of Argentine whitewash, they're pinged for holding on to the ball in the tackle. Heartbreak and the Pumas punt the ball clear as the hooter sounds. Now on for the match that is whetting the appetite, unbeaten New Zealand against unbeaten Kenya. Hold on to your seats...
TRY to @Scotlandteam! Conversion is unsuccessful. Score ARG 21 - 19 SCO. 2mins to go. #nailbiter #GoldCoast7s— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 10:25
While two very different team talks take place; one calm, concise, the other passioned with repeated gesticulating, the Skilled Park PA system is absolutely belting out Bon Jovi's Livin' On A Prayer, accompanied by unmelodic roars from the evening crowd. Come on, sing along now...
Argentina 21-7 Scotland
Lovely interchange between Axel Muller and Diego Palma on the left flank sees the latter touch down under the sticks for a very easy-on-the-eye touchdown, cancelling out Struan Dewar's fourth-minute leveller. And the Pumas are roaring with their third try in the first seven minutes as a kindly bounce allows Agustin Cortes to ground his clever grubber kick. Half-time and it's looking good for the South Americans.
TRY to @unionargentina! Conversion successful and Argies take a 7-0 lead OVER @Scotlandteam in 3rd min of H1. #GoldCoast7s— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 10:11
A generally content Geraint John, Canada Sevens coach: "We will be disappointed we let them in there at the end there, but if you had said at the beginning of the day we would have two wins and one loss, I think we would have been happy."
Canada 24-17 Portugal
These is the 21st meeting between these two teams, with Canada winning a good 60% of their previous matches. Teenager Justin Douglas' try shows just how much they control this game, zooting up the outside with impressive pace. Portugal's Carl Murray notches his 12th and 13th tries of his international career for his adopted country (he's Kiwi by birth) to pull the scores to within a converted try. However, it's too late as Canada boot the ball into touch for their first win of the day.
Canada 19-7 Portugal
Sloppy tackling from Portugal as Ciaran Hearn slips a tackle way too easily as Canada take a 14-7 lead following on from Francisco Almeida's leveller. And right on the stroke of half-time, it's that man again - Johnny Moonlight barges over for hs fourth try of the afternoon. The North Americans haven't missed a tackle all game, the Portuguese have made four.
@Kenya7s making sure they are prepared for their big clash with @nz7s #GoldCoast7s http://t.co/c10LxCpsXc— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 09:50
A sad sight on the sidelines as Canada kick off against Portugal in Pool C with their inspirational captain Nathan Hirayama sat on the sidelines sporting a plastercast from his ankle right up to his shins, though Johnny Moonlight's third try of the day will have curled his lips into something which resembles a smile.
France 28-19 Spain
Bravo Espana, stubborn right up until the final whistle as Jacobo Martin touches down on the hooter. It's to no avail but plenty of fight from the Castillian commandos.
France 28-14 Spain
Seconds after Spain's Gautier Minguillon levels the scores with an opportunistic burst, his team-mate David Mota is pinged for timewasting, sent to the sin-bin to think about his misdeamour. While he's on the naughty step, the French make him may for his transgression as Jeremy Aicardi piles over for his second try before a fresh-legged Julien Candelon puts the burners on for a neat try in the corner.
France 14-7 Spain
It's an all-European affair in Pool B as neighbours France and Spain face up in the search for a first victory of the season. Igor Genua's over-the-head try brings the scores level following Jeremy Aicardi's early score, only for the French to stretch their lead to seven once again as Manoel Dall Igna motors through the middle unopposed for a half-time lead.
TRY to @FranceRugby7s' Jeremy Aicardi. Conversion attempt successful. Score FRA - 7 - 0 ESP with 3mins30 to go in H1. #GoldCoast7s— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 09:27
The @GoldCoast7s have certainly come alive this weekend. @KenyaRugby7s have been the surprise package— Christian Catley (@Christian Catley) 12/10/2013 09:22
As the sun sets on this glorious corner of Queensland, a sweaty USA player-coach Matt Hawkins says: "We didn't hold on to the ball in the first two games, that was the difference (against Tonga)." The South African-born number three has one of the best beards in the tournament - only DJ Forbes can compete with him when it comes to debonair facial hair. Who owns your favourite beard at the HSBC Sevens World Series?
USA 14-7 Tonga
Now we have a game - Zack Test unleashes a Campo-like jump-step into the corner before team-mate Miles Craigwell picks up from the base of a ruck to steam through unopposed through the middle for what is the match-winning score. The Tongans look spent. Well, you would be too after bunging it around in that heat at that intensity.
HT Eagles still very much in this. Just the one @RugbyTonga break, otherwise it's been all Eagles. @GoldCoast7s— USA Rugby (@USA Rugby) 12/10/2013 09:11
Nothing doing for the USA though as a gutsy Tonga hold on to their lead. We're all set for a very entertaining last seven minutes here, don't go anywhere!
So it's Tonga that take an early lead as Selu Vailea runs the length of the field after an entire four minutes of USA pressure. Matt Hawkins needs to give his side something here as player/coach....
Who has been your standout player of day one? Could it be Tomasi Cama of New Zealand? Or someone else? Let us know using #SevensDreamTeam - it could be an interesting one!
Can SA make it three wins from 3? This guy certainly hopes so! #GoldCoast7s http://t.co/DWqRBSWALp— IRB Sevens (@IRB Sevens) 12/10/2013 08:54
John's right, Kenya has looked mightily impressive today but their big test will be against the All Black Sevens! Do you think they can overturn Sir Gordon Tietjens' side? Let us know using @irbsevens
Woke up to some amazing results #Kenya7s beat USA and Tonga in Pool A. Bring on New Zealand #GoldCoast7s— John Muchoki (@John Muchoki) 12/10/2013 08:46
First though we have two matches where something has to give with USA, Tonga, France and Spain all looking for their first wins of the day.
The sun is beginning to set at Skilled Park on Australia's Gold Coast, but it certainly isn't for the action on the pitch. We still have eight enthralling matches remaining, including two pool deciders. First Kenya will try and become the first side to score against New Zealand today in Pool A, before England face a South Africa side that has made their late arrival into the team hotel look non-existent.
Australia 22-7 Argentina
What a debut for Tom Lucas, who touches down in the corner to give Australia plenty of daylight against the South Americans, their first win of the tournament. Australia coach Michael O'Connor on Samoa, their next opponent: "They're really hard to beat, they pass the ball more than any other team. We have to be on our game tonight."
TRY to @Aussie7s debutant Tom Lucas. Brother of Matt & @BennyLucas87 & 3rd Lucas brother to play for Aus Sevens. AUS 22 - 7 ARG #GoldCoast7s— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 08:33
These two teams have met 41 times in previous meetings? Guess who comes out on top? If you guessed Argentina, a high five coming your way. The Pumas have won 22 encounters, including last year's Plate Semi Final, a match they won 17-14. Meanwhile, Shannon Walker's danced through the Wallabies defence but gets tap-tackled just as he's about to pounce for the line. Great tackle.
Some nice passing interchanges from @Aussie7s in the @GoldCoast7s against Argentina. HT Aus 17-7— Stuart McLennan (@Stuart McLennan) 12/10/2013 08:28
Australia 17-7 Argentina
Lucas de Vincenzi gives the hosts a terrible start as he converges on a long kick but the men in green and gold respond with two quick tries from Nick Malouf and Shannon Walker before Malouf, wearing the number one shirt, beats two defenders with a superb step off his left and right. Good game this...
Next up is the "Battle of the A's" - Argentina and Australia, and the hosts are starting with the fleet-footed Shannon Walker, a man who knows Skilled Park well after his time with the Gold Coast Titans.
Started off good, went ugly in the middle, survived the end. A win's a win though #Samoa #GoldCoast7s— Atom (@Atom) 12/10/2013 08:16
Slick hands from the Samoa line feeds Faalemiga Selesele to touch down at the posts before Reupena Levasa comes up with one of the hits of the tournament in the dying seconds as the men in blue secure their 25th victory over Scotland.
Samoa 12-12 Scotland
Another steely riposte from Scotland, who made up a 21-point deficit against Australia to level against the hosts in their opening match. Michael Fedo scores his second of the match. Surely it can't happen again, can it? Scotland's last win against the Samoans in the World Series was back in February 2007 in Wellington...
Samoa 12-7 Scotland
Scotland have yet to touch the ball in the first half - Samoa have put together 22 passes and two tries through Misioka Timoteo and Sani Niue, although Michael Fedo scores his team's first points of the match with virtually their first meaning touch of the match.
HERE WE GO! Cries of "Manu, Manu, Manu" from the crowd #SAMvSCO #GoldCoast7s— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 07:58
A relieved Nanyak Dala of Canada, who are without their captain Nathan Hirayama because of an ankle injury: "We have to go out there and do it for Nate, the boys showed up and played some good rugby. We didn't have much ball in the first game, but we had more there and it certainly paid off."
And @RugbyCanada hang on against @WelshRugbyUnion...here's the story in stats #goldcoast7s http://t.co/n9pQJLxWnH— IRB Sevens (@IRB Sevens) 12/10/2013 07:55
Wales 14-19 Canada
Justin Douglas burns his man on the outside while James Davies, brother of Wales and British and Irish Lions centre Jonathan, gets a much-needed score back for Wales. Chris Knight reduces the deficit to just 5 with a try in the final 90 seconds, setting up a stirring finale...but Canada hold on for only their eighth win over Wales in 28 attempts.
Wales 0-12 Canada
It may sound like something you'd expect to watch on TV but it's very much the Johnny Moonlight Show in Robina as the big Canadian number four notches two first-half tries against a lethargic Wales. Another poor first 7 minutes from Paul John's team. The coach urges his team to step up their defence in an emotional half-time team-talk.
Big #JohnMoonlight straightens up & shows good pace to open the scoring. Canada 7-0 Wales #GoldCoast7s— Maru Ririnui (@Maru Ririnui) 12/10/2013 07:39
We got a word with Avan Lee, Sevens General Manager, on what promises to be a big 12 months for Sevens: "It's great to be here on the opening day of the HSBC Sevens World Series in Australia. We're at the start of an exciting time in Sevens and this season is no different with the Commonwealth Games at the end of it. With one of the 15 core sides also being relegated after London, you can already sense that there is an extra level of tension and excitement surrounding each match for the teams and the fans."
Fiji 38-0 Portugal
The hapless Portuguese defence are pummelled by Benito Masilevu, his second score of the game, before Samisoni Viriviri slices open another gaping hole for their fifth five-pointer. Number six comes soon after as Donasio Ratubuli Naturaga charges through the middle from a smart offload in the tackle. Impressive from the defending champions.
Fiji 21-0 Portugal
The defending champions are in front as Osea Kolinisau takes advantage of a quick tap to power through for the first score of the match, followed up with a smart effort from Benito Masilevu bursting from 40m, complete with a David Campese-style step at the death. Ilai Tinai then intercepts a poor pass, setting up Samuela Saqiwa for his second World Series try. All about the Pacific Islanders right now.
Australia's most capped Test player George Gregan is among the crowd at Skilled Park. The former scrum-half is a huge sevens fan and, when pressed on who he's been enjoying watching this afternoon, he says: "Kenya. They just keep improving year after year. I always enjoy watching Fiji because they play pure sevens rugby, they've been my standout team so far."
Catching up with @GeorgeGregan in an interval at @GoldCoast7s http://t.co/AyS7ZirBCY— IRB Sevens (@IRB Sevens) 12/10/2013 07:10
England flyer Dan Norton: "We have a lot of natural attackers, so defensively if we can stop a few tries here and there, then we'll win games."
England 26-12 France
What can you say? Dan Norton notches his 139th try for England with a series of dizzying steps, stretching France's defence too and fro before it gives up the ghost. The score, along with Christian Lewis-Pratt's try, gives England daylight after a tense first half. A much-improved second-half display from Simon Amor's team.
Tense moments on @FranceRugby7s bench. @Official_RFU up 19-12 w/ 4 mins left on the board. #GoldCoast7s @IRBSevens http://t.co/cN76RtumAh— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 06:55
England 12-12 France
Now then, after tries from Mat Turner and speedster Dan Norton, England concede a couple of sloppy tries scored by Julien Jane and Renaud Delmas. We've got a game on here...
Whoops! Referee Anthony Moyes inadvertently finds himself face-down in grass as he's accidently scythed down by Mat Turner's tackle on Vincent Inigo, swiping him off his feet in one fluid movement. But the Aussie official's back on his feet with a cheeky smile on his face. They breed 'em tough in Australia.
4mins: Julien Jane makes a 50m break to score the first try for France @Official_RFU 12 - 5 @FranceRugby7s— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 06:47
RT @GoldCoast7s: The MMNZ Thunder Netball Team dish out "The Star" in the #XXXX Queenslander bar. #WhatHappensTour #TimeToPlay http://t.co/…— IRB Sevens (@IRB Sevens) 12/10/2013 06:43
South Africa captain Kyle Brown: "I think the most important thing was to get over that first hurdle against France. We played on scraps there a little against Spain, and we need to sharpen up a little bit because England will punish us for those."
South Africa 38-7 Spain
A touch Chelsea midfielder Juan Mata in Spain's first try, a deft left-footed chip opens up South Africa's defence, allowing Francisco Hernandez to touch down under the posts. However, the jet-heeled Cecil Afrika steams through 60m or so to notch his 94th score seconds after. And Spain are down to six when Igor Genua is pinged for timewasting, allowing Jamba Ulengo to take advantage to touch down on the hooter.
Who's caught your eye so far at the @goldcoast7s? Use #SevensDreamTeam to nominate your players for the first one of the season!— IRB Sevens (@IRB Sevens) 12/10/2013 06:32
South Africa 19-0 Spain
Oooof! What a hit from Justin Geduld on Angel Lopez! The dreadlocked Springbok forces possession to be turned over as Kyle Brown waltzes over for his 58th try. One-way traffic so far. Mind you, that's what we thought when Australia led Scotland 21-0 at half-time earlier...
.@BlitzBokke show they are going to be a force come finals, with 2 tries in the first 3 minutes! RSA - 14 - 0 @Spain7s— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 06:23
Kenya 31-5 USA
Just when they looked like going through their opening two Pool matches without conceding, the rapid Carlin Isles skims over for a score despite a strong challenge from Collins Injera on the tryline. Kenya captain Andrew Amonde on the emergence of the exciting Billy Odhiambo: "It just shows the talent we have back home. Willie (Ambaka) was a big loss but Billy has stepped in."
Collins Injera with another Try. Conversion successful. Kenya 31-0 USA. #Kenya7s #GoldCoast7s— James Oduor (@James Oduor ) 12/10/2013 06:16
So far Kenya has not conceded a try at the Gold Coast sevens. Let's keep it up!— Ben Obinju (@Ben Obinju) 12/10/2013 06:12
Kenya 24-0 USA
Billy Odhiambo plants a smacker on the ball as he glides through for his second score of the game, this boy has some serious wheels on him.
I think the temporary shutdown is affecting #TeamUSA. #TeamKenya is teaching them the ropes mercilessly #GoldCoast7s— Philip Etale (@Philip Etale) 12/10/2013 06:09
Kenya 19-0 USA
The sizeable Kenyan contingent are jigging in the stands as the musclar Billy Odhiambo powers over for an impressive score moments before the hooter. Kenya look mean.
Kenya 14-0 USA
Kenya really do mean business - Oscar Ouma doubles Collins Injera's opening score with only three minutes gone on the clock. The Americans looked shellshocked, the men in red are right up in their faces, pressing an aggressive defensive line.
2mins: Kenya are looking dangerous once again. Collins Injera scores @Kenya7s 7 - 0 @USARugby #KENvUSA— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 06:00
New Zealand's Tim Mikkelson reaches another milestone has moves level with Karl Tenana, who's in the commentary box, on the all-time leading try scorers' list with 113. "We wanted to step it up from the first match, we struggled a bit in the conditions," he says after the match. Only Tomasi Cama has more scores for NZ with 137.
New Zealand 26-0 Tonga
Tim Mikkelson nets his third try of the tournament while David Raikuna gets his individual tally off zero second-half scores as New Zealand cruise a comfortable victory. DJ Forbes makes a fleeting appearance at the end of the half, though the All Blacks captain will have bigger fish to fry as the tournament progresses.
NZ leading Tonga 26-0 at #GoldCoast7s http://t.co/JzuEb6czeJ— IRB Sevens (@IRB Sevens) 12/10/2013 05:51
New Zealand 12-0 Tonga
Coach Gordon Tietjens (sorry, Sir Gordon Tietjens) opts to rest a number of key All Black personnel. And one of those who benefits is Mark Jackman, who surges through for two first-half touchdowns. Controlled from the defending champions, no alarms or surprises. That's why they're world champions.
Time for the second set of Pool matches as the ebullient New Zealand take on Tonga. If their first-round scores are anything to go by, then we could be in for a Twenty20 score. The last strains of Metallica's Enter Sandman fade out as we begin our ninth match of the day.
A bit of a sickener for the hosts, surrendering a 21-point lead on the hooter. They didn't miss a tackle at half-time yet the stats show they missed four in the second half. "We just fell asleep in the second half and you can't do that in Sevens," says Australia captain Ed Jenkins. "I am gutted, two games to put it right. But Argentina and Samoa, doesn't get any easier from here."
Scotland what a come back!! 21 all. #goldcoast7s— michael gichuki (@michael gichuki) 12/10/2013 05:22
Australia 21-21 Scotland
The crowd make up for the absence of John Farnham by cheering Con Foley's try, Australia's third before Mark Robertson cuts the deficit to 14, soon shortened to seven in the final minute as Scott Riddell charges through, leaving 30 seconds for a grandstand finale. AND SCOTLAND LEVEL ON THE HOOTER! James Fleming's 60m run levels the match for a superb finish. What a match!
Love that they are playing You're The Voice at half time in the #GoldCoast7s. Love a bit of John Farnham.— Hoffy (@Hoffy) 12/10/2013 05:14
For all you 80s music fans (and we know there are plenty out there), one of Australia's finest exports John Farnham is blaring around the stadium, the one and only "The Voice" at half-time. Only the fans want more, continuing the chorus line around the stadium even though the PA system has stopped.
Australia 14-0 Scotland
A huge cheer erupts around Skilled Park as James Stannard's quick tap sets up Sean McMahon to burn through the inside channel for the opening score, brilliantly converted by Stannard from the touchline. And with 23 seconds on the clock, Nick Malouf's slick double step allows him to cut through for a converted try. The hosts haven't won this tournament on since 2002. Time to end that 11-year home hoodoo?
And the reactions of Samoa coach Viliamu Punivalu after his team's opening Pool C win over Argentina? "The First games are always difficult, the boys are always a little bit nervous there were a lot of drop balls in the warm-up.
But we took it in the end, the boys stuck to their tasks. We need to fine tune our game plan which is why we struggled in the first four minutes because we didn't, but we need to focus on Scotland now."
.@Aussie7s are about to run onto the first for their first match! The crowd is getting excited! #AUSvSCO— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 05:02
Some interesting match facts from @manusamoa's victory over @unionargentina at #GoldCoast7s http://t.co/75gWhDIrDT— IRB Sevens (@IRB Sevens) 12/10/2013 05:02
Samoa 26-7 Argentina
Reupena Levasa rounds off the Samoan scoring for a confident win, although Nicolas Bruzzone manages to get his team off the mark with an intercept try after the hooter. Coach Cora will want a significant improvement in their next match against Australia.
Samoa 26-0 Argetina
Fale So'oialo gets Samoa ticking over at the start of the second before one of the best tries you'll see all day as Alastasi Tupou steps not one, not two, not three but four Argentine defenders to tap under the sticks. "More steps than the pyramid" screams commentator Greg Clark. Clearly a Mayan pyramid rather than an Eygptian one...
Argentina are the only side who'd try to win a sevens game with the scrum #GoldCoast7s— Pete Oliver (@Pete Oliver) 12/10/2013 04:47
Argentina 0-7 Samoa
New Argentina coach Santiago Gomez Cora, the all-time leading Sevens try scorer with 230, 10 more than Ben Collings, is taking his charge of his first match. It's been a bit scrappy from his team so far and Levi Asifa'amatala takes advantage of a defensive lapse to charge through for the opening score, the only of the first half. Tight game so far.
Wales' Adam Thomas on their opening victory: "First half we were a bit sloppy but fair play to them. We came out second half, turned negatives to positives and put them away so we're happy with that. We had a good pre-season over in South Africa, but now we need to focus on this weekend and looking for two more wins today." Meanwhile, it's time for Argentina against Samoa, who've got plenty of support in the stands.
Wales 33-14 Portugal
Whatever was said in Wales' half-time team talk clearly worked as Wales bash out three tries in quick succession from captain Rhys Shellard, Adam Thomas and debutant Will Thomas. And Chris Knight rounds off the scoring with a score on the hooter.
Wales 7-14 Portugal
There's a whiff of an upset in the air as Pedro Leal scores on the cusp of half-time, his 75th of his career, courtesy of a botched clearance by Alex Webber, who forgets to make contact with the ball five metres from his own touchline. An intruiging second-half awaits...
Wales 7-7 Portugal
The Welsh are in an unfamilar blue and green number with Portugal sporting red. However, the change of shirt makes no difference to Alex Webber, who steams through the middle for Wales' opening try. However, the Portuguest hit back with a scintillating try, an exhibition of slick passing through a number of phases before Joao Lino touches down under the posts. One of the best tries we've seen today.
Match 6: @WelshRugbyUnion v @PortugalRugby is starting. What is your score prediction? #WALvPOR— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 04:21
Fiji 20-10 Canada
Lucas Hammond consolidates some of the damage as he neatly steps off his left but he can't do much to prevent Canada from going down to their 34th defeat to Fiji. A delighted Ben Ryan, taking charge of his first match as Fiji coach was particularly pleased with how his team dealt with the kick-offs. "We've worked hard on that in the last three sessions," he says. "They're like sponges, I can't wait to get stuck intothem over the coming months."
Not a pleasant sight for Canadian fans as captain Nathan Hirayama is winched off the pitch by two colleagues with what looks like an ankle injury following a particular muscular challenge. Let's hope it's not too serious... Meanwhile, Ilai Tinai sells a delicious dummy, opening up the Canadian defence for his hat-trick, the second we've seen today. Fiji 20-5 Canada
7mins: Tinai scores his second try of the match after a solid tap off the kick off. @fijirugby 15 - 5 @RugbyCanada #FIJvCAN— Gold Coast 7s (@Gold Coast 7s) 12/10/2013 04:10
Fiji 10-5 Canada
Despite the poor restarts as highlighted by Patrick Johnston (below), Canada are on the scoreboard as the brilliantly named Johnny Moonlight sets up Harry Jones for a deserved score. It's his 13th in national colours. Can the Canadians secure only their third ever victory against Fiji in 36 attempts? We've got seven-and-a-half minutes to discover if they can...
Re-starts were a problem for Canada last year; Geraint John talked about their importance before #GoldCoast7s. Another Fiji try. 14-0.— Patrick Johnston (@Patrick Johnston) 12/10/2013 04:03
It's time for the defending champions Fiji, drilled by their new coach Ben Ryan, who stands out a mile from his charges with his red hair. He'll be content with the opening exchanges against Canada in the Pool C opener as Sakiusa Nadruku and Ilai Tinai cut through the red tide for a 10-0 lead.
Fiji-Canada coming up next. The Fijians get the biggest cheer of the day. #GoldCoast7s— Rugby News (@Rugby News) 12/10/2013 03:56
England 54-7 Spain
Ah yes, don't forget to get involved with the #SevensDreamTeam, have your say on your player of the tournament. Spain finally break the duck as Jacobo Martin takes advantage of a two-on-one but Mat Turner has the final say to give England a healthy victory - there's even a smile on coach Simon Amor's face.
Dan Bibby @dbibby15 just completed a hat-trick against Spain for @Official_RFU - use #SevensDreamTeam to nominate him!— IRB Sevens (@IRB Sevens) 12/10/2013 03:51
England 47-0 Spain
It's a tryfest at Skilled Park as Dan Bibby cruises over for a hat-trick, his third a wonderful exhibition of footwork to scythe through the Spanish defence, adding to John Brake's 37th international try, brilliantly set up by a one-handed offload in the tackle from debutant Phil Burgess. Not a bad start to Simon Amor's reign as England coach.
England look great! #GoldCoast7s @IRBSevens— Eoghan NíGallchobair (@Eoghan NíGallchobair) 12/10/2013 03:45
England 26-0 Spain
More powerful running from Tom Mitchell sees the Englishman touch down for his second try before Fransisco Hernandez drops a clanger on his tryline, allowing Dan Bibby to stroll over for number three. And James Rodwell stretches every inch of his enormous frame to touch down on the half-time hooter for a comprehensive lead at the break, brilliantly converted by Mitchell from the touchline.
Sir Gordon Tietjens signs autographs after @nz7s opening victory in HSBC SWS @AllBlacks - is that DJ? http://t.co/b9SPmz7dpv— IRB Sevens (@IRB Sevens) 12/10/2013 03:39
It's time for a repeat of last year's Bowl final as England take on Spain. That match was particularly memorable for the Spaniards, who beat their opponents for the first time in the tournament's history with a last-minute 19-14 victory. However, back in the now and Tom Mitchell gives Simon Amor's team an early 5-0 lead with a strong surge on the wing.
South Africa 29-5 France
Ahhh the famous French resistance. Julien Jane intercepts a stray South African pass and he sets up Paul Albaladejo for his 76th international try. Ahhh, the resistance is short lived as Sampie Mastriet screams up the middle of the park for a score under the posts before Frankie Horn shows some useful football skills before bundling down his 230th point.
Only one answer Sammy - STAY UP!
Should i go to bed or should i wait for the @Kenya7s vs @USArugby? still pondering @Goldcoast7s @IRBsevens— Sammy Muraya (@Sammy Muraya) 12/10/2013 03:25
South Africa 19-0 France
Stephan Dippenaar extends the lead just before the break with the third try of the first half. Neil Powell's team only arrived on the Gold Coast on Friday after some unpleasant weather delayed their departure from South Africa. No sign of jetlag judging by this performance.
South Africa 12-0 France
Chris Dry slides over for his 50th international try moments after Justin Geduld gives last year's HSBC Sevens World Series runners up the lead in the second minute. Not too much resistance from France so far, all too easy for the Springboks.
If you're joining us for the first time, hello! We've had two comprehensive victories without reply from New Zealand and Kenya, where Minstry of Rugby (below) is aiming to ensure no-one is sleeping right now with the national team on song. It's time for our Pool B opener now as South Africa take on France.
RT @MinistryOfRugby: If you are in Kenya and you are asleep, we urge you to wake up right about now.... #Kenya7s #GoldCoast7s— Moustapha Ramadhan (@Moustapha Ramadhan) 12/10/2013 03:14
Kenya 38-0 Tonga
Fabian Olando seals a thumping victory for the 2008/09 runners up, a victory which satisfies coach Felix Ochieng. "I think there were a couple of areas where the boys dropped the ball but that happens in the first match," he says. "We know we got very close last time, we want to get one step closer." Tonga had seven debutants in their side, a chastening experience.
Kenya 31-0 Tonga
Kenya dominating possession and territory and envitably Tonga's fragile defence is breached as first Patrice Agunda and Eden Agero go over for tries number four and five. That's Agero's first try in Kenyan colours too, a proud moment for the young man. The Kenyan flags are fluttering with pride at Skilled Park.
And give you one guess.... Try by Agunda makes it @kenya_7s 24- Tonga 0 @GoldCoast7s #rugby #sevens— Behind The Ruck (@Behind The Ruck) 12/10/2013 03:04
Kenya 17-0 Tonga
Felix Ayange extends Kenya's lead on the cusp of half-time and it's looking good for coach Felix Ochieng. Meanwhile, we've spotted what looks like a group of farmers riding what appear to be inflatable ducks in the stands. Anyone spot any better fancy dress costumes, then send them through via Twitter on @IRBsevens or #Sevens.
Kenya 10-0 Tonga
It's one-way traffic as Billy Odhiambo touches down in the corner before a brutal hand-off from Collins Injera sees the experienced star score his 160th international try with a musclar burst, although both conversions are missed from the touchline.
Out come the teams for the second Pool A encounter this morning featuring Kenya, who finished fourth in last year's tournament, against Tonga. From their 12 previous encounters the Africans have the advantage, winning eight. How will number 13 go?
New Zealand 38-0 USA
Beautiful play from debutant Ambrose Curtis, drawing in the defender with a sizzling run on the wing before a sumptuous offload for Tim Mikkelson to touch down his second try of the match before Curtis goes over for his first try in national colours courtesy of a miss pass from Cama. Dominant from Gordon Tietjen's team.
New Zealand 26-0 USA
Jaunty step from 20-year-old Joe Webber 30m out, carving open an increasingly forlorn defence as New Zealand take a commanding lead, converted by Cama. The USA have never beaten the All Blacks in 23 attempts - their 24th looks like it could well go the same way.
NZ absolutely dominant in the breakdown,still time left #USA #GoldCoast7s— Sean Duffy (@Sean Duffy) 12/10/2013 02:38
New Zealand 19-0 USA
And the USA floodgates are hanging off their hinges as last year's Sevens Player of the Year Tim Mikkelson uses that frightening speed as he cruises through on the wing for his 111th try in his 41st appearance in a New Zealand shirt. That USA half-time team-talk will have to be the best ever if they want to get back into this.
New Zealand 14-0 USA
Scrappy opening few minutes in this encounter, passes going astray way too easily. However, the Black wave powers through as Tomasi Cama fashions an opening for Waisake Naholo to power through to tap down under the posts, swiftly followed by Cama's 138th international try, converting both scores. The number six now has 1837 points. Remarkable.
You're right there KiwiSportsFans, who can anyone knock the mighty All Blacks off their perch? New Zealand appear as menacing as ever, with their legendary coach sporting some a few extra letters in his name. Gordon Tietjens, the man who has overseen New Zealand’s unrivalled success in the sport, was recently made a Sir for his services to rugby. Arise Sir Titch, one of the most thoroughly deserved accolades ever. And we're under way for the opener!
Must be so scary looking at the NZ 7s team sheet and then you notice they have a Knight coaching them! #GoldCoast7s— KiwiSportsFans (@KiwiSportsFans) 12/10/2013 02:29
The gates have swung open and Skilled Park is nicely filling up for our tournament opener, defending HSBC Sevens World Series champions New Zealand who take on the USA. The two teams opened up last year's tournament, when New Zealand won 19-7. What lies in store this morning? Out come the players, time to get excited...
A new team will join the elite 16 from next season, to be determined at round seven at the Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens, when 12 regional qualifiers will be battling for the coveted spot. The team which finishes bottom after round nine, the Marriott London Sevens, will lose their elite status at the start of the 2014/15 season. Pitfalls and incentives abound.
This season's series has a brand-new feel to it with the introduction of a promotion and relegation structure as we inch ever closer to the tropical climes of Rio de Janeiro, where rugby sevens will make its Olympic debut in 2016 at Deodoro Park. We'll explain more in the next post...
If you love your tries, you're going to love our next video. Last year's tournament saw 245 tries in 45 matches, an average of 5.44 a match. Coming up are seven of the best...
This is probably the best place to ask that question Robyn. The first of our matches features defending series champions New Zealand, who'll be up against USA at 1030 local time, which is a smidgeon under 25 minutes from now. You can see the full draw on the IRB Sevens website.
Bring on @GoldCoast7s :) Anyone know where I can find the draw?— Robyn Causer (@Robyn Causer) 12/10/2013 02:03
This year’s tournament is making a little bit of history - we’re streaming every single match LIVE on our website in territories where there isn't a broadcast deal in place (find out more here), which is something to get very excited about indeed.
Let's hope so Nadia. The heavens have been spitting tiny droplets on the lush Skilled Park turf, although not enough to cause too much alarm to those who've made the fancy dress effort - nothing worse than getting a Pink Panther outfit sopping wet in a downpour, right?
Welcome to the first installment of the HSBC Sevens World Series 2013/14 in Australia’s sun-buttered Gold Coast, the first of nine tournaments across four continents featuring the fastest, the most skilled and the most fittest Sevens exponents on the planet as we kick off the 15th season of the elite series in Robina.
To some it represents fortune, an auspicious, blessed charm manifesting itself as a symbolic form of luck and reverence. To others it represents the days of the week, the wonders of the world or the deadly sins. But to rugby fans, sevens means lung-busting fitness and a relentless, seat-of-your pants, end-to-end try-scoring frenzy. And we're so glad it’s back.