10 Apr 2017

New Zealand fall short in Hong Kong

6:48 am on 10 April 2017

The New Zealand men's rugby sevens team has finished fifth at the Hong Kong round of the World Series.

The All Black Sevens lost 21-19 to South Africa in the cup quarter-final, then beat England 21-7 and Argentina 10-7 in the play-off for fifth.

Fiji beat South Africa 22-0 in the final to claim their first tournament victory of the season and first under new coach Gareth Baber.

The result, their third consecutive win in Hong Kong, means Fiji jump to second place in the standings ahead of England while South Africa remain on top with three tournaments left this season.

New Zealand is fourth with three tournaments to play.

Regan Ware.

Regan Ware. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

New Zealand will be disappointed they missed chances to turn around their 2017 World Series campaign.

The All Black Sevens made it out of their pool after wins over Wales and Japan but lost to Fiji, forcing them to face a much tougher quarter-final match up against South Africa.

New Zealand had the league leaders on the ropes early in the match, ending the first half with a 12-7 lead.

But it did not take South Africa long to find form in the second half, holding onto the ball and running in two quick tries to turn the tide.