For the second week in a row, the Aussie 7s women and 2021 series champions, the Blitzbok South African men both won their respective draws at The Sevens Stadium, Dubai.
Repeating each team’s success from a week earlier, they were again too dominant and leave the United Arab Emirates kingdom with all the treats, before sides enjoy the holidays before resuming the 2021/22 HSBC Sevens Series in Malaga, Spain, from January 21 to 23.
Back on the pitch, the two days were filled with positive play, some upsets, and plenty of smiles from the fans who celebrated the rugby sevens game.
Aussie 7s women and Blitzboks claim second HSBC Sevens Series tournament wins
Banking top points in the standings, the Aussie 7s women now hold a commanding lead after two of six legs of the Sevens Series, and while enjoying a break on home soil will be a relief, they won’t want to rest on their laurels. Defeating Fiji in this final, they appear to be a real threat and deservedly are confident after defeating France to make the Cup final. But no team could match the Aussie girls, who seem to have made the most of two tournaments with New Zealand in attendance.
— World Rugby Sevens (@WorldRugby7s) December 4, 2021
Across in the men’s competition, the upset of Fiji losing twice on Day One saw them not make the Cup playoffs for only the second time ever in Dubai. That opened up the pathway for others, like Argentina and France. With South Africa repelling Kenya, their high standards saw them make the final again, where they played excellently to again earn top points. A narrow win to the Blitzbok 10-7 proved that this year will present highs and lows for each competing side.
🇿🇦 Job done! A second @Dubai7s crown for the Blitzboks in two weeks, the difference a second half try by JC Pretorius in a very hard final – 10-7 to SA! Well done gents, thanks @Aussie7s for a great game! #BestofUs #HSBC7s @WorldRugby7s @ASICS_ZA @FNBSA pic.twitter.com/FdHkxmB2Sw
— Springbok Sevens (@Blitzboks) December 4, 2021
As the sides break up for the holidays, retaining individual conditioning will be pivotal to the hopes for every side. And in the New Year, that will be bolstered by the return of New Zealand. The reigning Olympic and Commonwealth Games champions will travel to Spain with an eye to establish their credentials over the two draws. Although, both the Aussie 7s women and Blitzbok men will know they have solid ground to stand on.
As well as the Kiwis joining, the Great Britain sides will split into their national groups; England, Scotland, and Wales. That will aid those sides preparations ahead on the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, from July 28. But for all sides, the concentration on Malaga is first and foremost. The new venue should provide for more mild conditions – an average of 62 degrees (17′ centergrade) than Dubai has. Though the winning men’s team admits they love the conditions in Dubai. “We love Dubai, it has the same weather as South Africa.”
Hero of the Cup final win, JC Pretorius, said: “The thing with us being at the top, everyone wants to come at us but as a system, we stuck together and pulled it through”. His remarks show that even while under pressure through this second tournament, the Blitzbok winning streak now stretches to 21 consecutive matches – something the other men’s teams will be wishing they can aim to end in 2022.
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