South Africa win Dubai 7s as Kenya finish eighth


The Blitzboks beat USA 42-7 to win the Dubai 7s. [Courtesy]

South Africa thrashed USA 42-7 to win the opening leg of the 2021-2022 World Sevens Series.

Argentina finished third after edging out Fiji 19-12 in the bronze final match.

Kenya Sevens team made a poor start to the 2021-2022 World 7s Series season managing only an eighth-place finish at the Dubai Sevens first leg played at the Sevens Stadium in Dubai over the past two days.

After a day of mixed results on Friday where Kenya lost twice to Argentina and USA before a win against Spain in their Group B encounters, many expected Shujaa to improve on their performances yesterday after scrapping through to the knockout stage courtesy of best loser position. However, it was the same story after Innocent Simiyu’s charges lost all their three matches.

In the quarterfinals, Kenya renewed rivalry with Olympic champions Fiji where despite leading 5-0 after four minutes, Fiji were to show their strength after staging a comeback to win the match.

Kenya started off well and dominated the possession in the early minutes of the match that saw Herman Humwa cross over the white wash for the first try which they failed to convert from close range.

However, Fiji struck back with tries from Joseva Talacalo and Filipe Sauturaga converted by Waisea Nacuqu to enjoy a 14-5 half-time lead.

There was no coming back for Kenya after the break as Fiji dominated play, adding the third try through Panapasa Qeruqeru as Fiji won 19-5.

Kenya dropped to rankings matches for positions five to eight where they met Great Britain who once again thrashed them 33-5.

The defeat relegated Shujaa further to the position seven and eight classification match which again did not go their way after losing 29-7 to Ireland.

Despite boasting of a 22-0 win at the Tokyo Olympic Games and 38-5 win during the 2021 Series in Vancouver Sevens, Shujaa could not withstand the Irish who dominated a tired looking Kenyan team.

Shujaa end the tournament with just one win out of the six matches played.

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