HSBC Sevens World Series leaders New Zealand were among four unbeaten teams on day one of the Emirates Airline Glasgow 7s at Scotstoun Stadium.
The holders of the Ned Haig Cup were joined by South Africa, Fiji and Wales in boasting a 100% record in front of an exuberant 13,402 crowd.
Sadly, for home support, Scotland, after a promising victory against Portugal in their opening tie, succumbed to defeats by England and the Kiwis and will now face a relegation competition at Twickenham during next weekend’s Marriott London 7s to see if they can preserve their status as a core team on the IRB circuit.
From the moment that Argentina’s Nicolas Bruzzone scored the day’s first try, the action was non-stop. A first sin-binning from Spain’s Ignacio Martin followed and continuing the ground-breaking theme, Gareth Davies’ penalty was a key factor in Wales’ margin against France.
The USA, Scotland’s principal rivals in the battle to finish within the top 12 in the world standings, looked sharpness personified, Nick Edwards running in a hat-trick in a one-sided romp against Russia, and although a late try from the Welsh in the Eagles’ second tie, saw them lose that encounter, the Americans saw off the combative French in their final tie to book a Cup quarter-final place tomorrow and secure that top 12 spot.
While the focus was on the unbeaten teams, there was much to admire in the approach of, for example, Canada. Working hard for each other, with Glasgow Warriors’ Taylor Paris to the fore, the Canadians over-turned a 0-17 deficit to spring the first surprise of the day to see off Samoa and it required a try at the death from South Africa for that result to go against them.
The action resumes at Scotstoun tomorrow morning and tickets will again be available at the stadium.
Today’s results: Australia 10 Argentina 17; Fiji 45 Spain 0; France 14 Wales 22; USA 48 Russia 5; South Africa 17 Kenya 14; Samoa 17 Canada 19; New Zealand 31 England 5; Scotland 26 Portugal 5; Australia 42 Spain 14; Fiji 28 Argentina 10; France 15 Russia 14; USA 21 Wales 26; South Africa 17 Canada 14; Samoa 26 Kenya 0; New Zealand 40 Portugal 0 Scotland 7 England 29; Argentina 40 Spain 5; Wales 28 Russia 22; Kenya 10 Canada 21; England 46 Portugal 0; Australia 17 Fiji 19; France 14 USA 21; South Africa 27 Samoa 0; New Zealand 28 Scotland 0.
10.30am Samoa v Russia
10.52am Australia v Portugal
11.14am France v Kenya
11.36am Scotland v Spain
11.58am South Africa v USA
12.20pm Fiji v England
12.42pm Wales v Canada
1.04pm New Zealand v Argentina