Australia lose to Samoa in semis - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Australia lose to Samoa in semis

15/02/2010 05:15:03 PM Comments (0)

The Australian rugby sevens team have achieved their best result in the IRB Sevens World Series in over two years, despite going down to Samoa in the semi-final stage in Las Vegas on Sunday.

Samoa went onto beat New Zealand 33-12 to claim the USA Sevens Cup, after edging out Australia 14-12 with a wobbly conversion in the penultimate game.

But the Aussies recorded one of the upsets of the tournament by defeating Wellington Sevens champions Fiji 28-7, and are now closing in on fourth-placed England (50 season points), after earning a season-high 16 points in Vegas to take their tally to 46 after four events.

New Zealand (84) still lead the standings from Samoa (70) and Fiji (68).

Australia last appeared in an IRB Cup semi-final in February 2008, when they lost 32-7 to New Zealand in Wellington. Australia's last tournament victory was in Brisbane in 2002.

Aussie coach Michael O'Connor was pleased with the marked improvement of his side, which started the series with only two players with previous Sevens experience.

"We've played a minimum of four tournaments together and I have a good, young, enthusiastic group that are willing to learn and they showed out there that they have learned," said O'Connor.

"Against Samoa, it was two tries all and the last try they scored in the corner wide out and the conversion hit the goal post and bounced over - and that was the difference in the game basically."

The IRB Sevens World Series hits Australia next month and will be staged at Adelaide Oval from March 19-21.

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