Cup quarters set at USA Sevens
New Zealand, Fiji, South Africa and Kenya all topped their pools at the USA Sevens, round five of the HSBC Sevens World Series in Las Vegas.
In a changed format for the USA round of the Series, each of the 16 teams played two of their three pool matches on Friday evening at the Sam Boyd Stadium.
On Saturday 11 February they played their remaining pool match before a quarter final in either the Cup or the Bowl, leaving the climax of the knock-out competition on Sunday 12 February.
Samoa, Wales, England and Argentina also entered the Cup quarters as pool runners-up.
USA Sevens: Day one highlights
Pool A - NZL, SAM, AUS, JPN - POOL PROFILE >>
World Series leaders New Zealand maintained their 100% record and progressed to the Cup quarters as Pool A winners after a 12-5 victory against Samoa.
Having trailed 5-0 to a Paul Perez try, captain DJ Forbes and Tomasi Cama both crossed to set up a quarter final with England.
The nine-time Series champions have not won the USA Sevens since 2008 in San Diego but began their campaign with a 31-5 victory against Australia before a 42-5 defeat of Japan.
Two Tomasi Cama tries in the second seven minutes ensured New Zealand defeated their trans-Tasman rivals with Mark Jackman also scoring twice in the match and Lote Raikabula adding the first for Gordon Tietjens' side.
In their match against Japan two Frank Halai tries, Johnathan Malo's first two tries on the World Series and 15 points from Jackman ensured victory.
Former World Series champions Samoa also recorded a win in their first match with a 33-0 defeat of Japan thanks to two tries from Afa Aiono before Aiono added his third of the tournament in a 19-15 victory against Australia in the final match of day one.
Australia finished third in Pool A with a narrow 10-7 victory against Japan thanks to two tries from captain Ed Jenkins.
Pool B - FJI, CAN, ARG, USA - POOL PROFILE >>
Fiji became the first side to top their pool after a 19-10 victory against Canada on day two adding to a 33-19 defeat of the hosts and a 14-12 victory against Argentina on the opening day of the USA Sevens.
18 points from Metuisela Talebula assisted the Fijians in their win against Al Caravelli's side, whilst they came from 12-0 behind to eventually beat two-time USA Sevens champions Argentina 14-12 in an enthralling opening match thanks to tries from Nemani Nagusa and Waisea Nayacalevu.
Taylor Paris' late try snatched a 17-12 victory for Canada against rivals and hosts USA in the second match of day one. Last week's Cup quarter finalists came from behind twice to secure victory but were unable to beat Argentina in their second match, conceding two tries to Francisco Merello in a 19-12 defeat.
Los Pumas ended the pool action with a 14-12 defeat of the hosts USA, with the South American side joining Fiji in the Cup quarters as a result of their win.
Pool C - FRA, RSA, WAL, URU - POOL PROFILE >>
South Africa beat France 33-5 to book their place in the Cup quarters as Pool C winners where they will play Argentina.
On day one Cecil Afrika scored a hat-trick to take his tournament try tally to five in South Africa's 29-12 victory against reigning Rugby World Cup Sevens champions Wales.
Afrika earlier scored his first two tries of the tournament as he helped Paul Treu's side to a 33-0 victory against Uruguay. The defending USA Sevens champions scored three other tries through Cornal Hendricks, Frankie Horne and Bernado Botha, scoring his 30th World Series try.
An Alex Walker conversion proved the difference for Wales in their 14-12 victory against Dubai Sevens runners-up France. Traling 12-7 after tries from Paul Albaladejo and Julien Jane, Lee Williams raced away to cross the line before Walker converted to take the win.
A second half try from Harry Robinson and two from Kristian Phillips ensured Paul John's side beat Uruguay 28-7 in their third pool match.
Uruguay narrowly missed out on an upset against France on the opening day, eventually losing 21-19. Two Felipe Berchesi tries and one from Guillermo Lijtenstein gave them a 19-14 lead but Terry Bouhraoua's try and Thibaut Zambelli's conversion snatched a late victory for France.
Pool D - KEN, ENG, SCO, BRA - POOL PROFILE >>
Kenya enter the Cup quarters as pool winners after a 7-7 draw with England in the final Pool D match. Tom Mitchell had canceled out Lavin Asego's try, but the draw was enough for the African side to finish top.
England booked their place in the Cup quarters with a dramatic 12-7 victory against the Auld Enemy Scotland. Having scored their first try Dan Norton was then sent off, but a Christian Lewis-Pratt try with seconds remaining ensured Ben Ryan's side maintained their 100% record on day one.
Currently third in the Series they opened up with a 29-5 victory against Brazil thanks to a Norton hat-trick. Brazil were making their first outing on the world stage since 2002 and are building towards the hosting of Sevens Rugby's first Olympic event, in Rio in 2016.
Collins Injera also scored a hat-trick against Brazil as Kenya recorded a 38-0 victory against Martin Schusterman's side adding to an earlier 17-14 victory against Scotland to also progress to set up a pool decider with England on day two.
Two Humphrey Kayange tries and Injera's first of the day helped the African side come from 7-0 down to beat Graham Shiel's side in the opening Pool D match of day one. The Kenyans, with brothers Kayange and Injera back in harness, are showing something near their best form and picking up where they left off in Wellington.
For the Scots, captain Colin Gregor is the only player on show to have started 26 matches - all of his team's games - this season and he scored in their 33-5 victory against Brazil. Both teams will play their Bowl quarter final matches later on day two.
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- Oceania 1
- Playoff Winner
- South Africa
- Asia 1
- New Zealand
- Africa 1