Wellington 7s: Day two round-up

Scotland 7s were unable to repeat their Cape Town 7s Bowl winning feat in Wellington, going down to Samoa in the final after defeats of Portugal and Japan.

In picking up seven points in Wellington, Calum MacRae’s men now sit 10th in the World Series rankings ahead of net week’s leg in Sydney, where they will face South Africa, Kenya and Russia in Pool B. 

Scotland 29 v 12 Portugal

Following a third place finish in Pool A on day one of proceedings, Calum MacRae’s men were drawn against Portugal in the Bowl quarter-final, who they saw off after a promising start to the game. 

Scotland took a commanding lead in the first-half of the quarter-final clash, with James Johnstone, Scott Riddell and Joseva Nayacavou all crossing the whitewash to score. Captain Scott Wight added the extras to Nayacavou’s score, to give his side a 17-0 lead at the break.

Following the interval, Portugal brought themselves back into the game with quick-fire tries from Belo and Fernandes, and a Leal conversion, tightening the deficit to just five points (17-12). 

However, a fantastic individual score from Johnstone provided a buffer for his side, before replacement Mark Robertson added his name to the scoresheet at the death to close the game out (29-12) and see Scotland through to face Japan in the semi-final. 

Scotland 31 v 26 Japan

In a high-scoring, tit-for-tat affair, Scotland came out on top after Joseva Nayacvou scored a superb try after three minutes of extra-time to see his side through to the Bowl final, where they would face Samoa.

Scotland went into the interval with a 19-14 lead as Nick Grigg grabbed the opener, and Jamie Farndale showed his eye for the line, dotting down on two occasions for the brace. 

Japan ensured they were still in the game with Sakai and Ozawa scoring either side of Farndale’s first score.

Soejima tied the scores at 19-all with a try in the eighth minute, and put his team in-front in the 13th minute with another fine individual effort. Sakai’s conversion put the Cherry Blossoms 26-19 up as the hooter sounded.

However, Scotland were yet to be beaten and a mesmeric piece of skill from Joseva Nayacavou in the fifteenth minute, drew in two defenders, which allowed for Nick McLennan to saunter in under the posts. Gavin Lowe calmly slotted the conversion to take the score to 26-all at full-time.

This meant that extra-time would now be played, with the first team to score progressing to the Bowl final.

After an intense three minutes of rugby, Joe Nayacavou followed up his heroic assist to tie the game with a try of his own, which would see Scotland progress to the final to face Samoa. 

Scotland 7 v 19 Samoa 

Scotland were unable to overcome Pacific Islanders Samoa, and lift their second Bowl in as many legs, with the opposition opening up a 19-point gap, which proved too great for the men in blue to close. 

 In a hard-fought opening half, Samoa were the first and only team to score as Hunapo’s try – converted by Mealoi – gave them a 7-0 lead at the break.

The physical Samoan outfit built on their first-half momentum as Alosio added to Hunapo’s score to put his side 12-0 ahead after ten minutes, before Tusitala enhanced their lead further with a try and conversion on 14 minutes (19-0).

 Scotland had the final say after the hooter had sounded as Lowe finished off a fine individual effort, and duly converted to close the game at 19-7 in favour of Samoa.

Stats

Scotland 29 v 12 Portugal 

Tries: James Johnstone (2), Scott Riddell, Joseva Nayacavou and Mark Robertson.

Conversions: Wight (2)

Scotland 31 v 26 Japan

Tries: Nick Grigg, Jamie Farndale (2), Nick McLennan and Joseva Nayacavou.

Conversions: Wight (2) and Lowe.

Scotland 7 v 19 Samoa

Tries: Gavin Lowe

Conversions: Gavin Lowe