7 Feb 2014

New Zealand lose 7s opener

4:04 pm on 7 February 2014

New Zealand has been stunned 12-7 by Fiji in their opening game at the Wellington Sevens.

The men in black must now win their final two pool games to qualify for the knockout stage of their home tournament.

Three-time champions Fiji struck first just before half-time with New Zealand's Scott Curry in the sin-bin after being given a yellow card for a professional foul.

The hosts hit back just after the break through Sherwin Stowers to take a 7-5 lead but a scintillating individual try from Samisoni Viriviri, the world series leading tryscorer, proved the game winner for Fiji.

New Zealand had a chance to snatch victory in the dying seconds but a forward pass from debutant Akira Ioane killed off any hope of a last gasp win.

New Zealand next play Spain just before 6pm, with their final pool game against France just before 10pm.