Australia’s six from six in perfect Sevens start

Alex Bellamy Roar Rookie

By Alex Bellamy, Alex Bellamy is a Roar Rookie

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13 Have your say

    Australia’s women’s sevens team has started off the 2017-18 with a perfect six from six to take gold in the first leg of the World Sevens Series in Dubai.

    In what will be a relief to Aussie fans, Australia appeared to have shaken off the pressure that contributed to them underperforming in their attempt to retain their 2016-17 World Sevens Series championship. The new-look team showcased refreshed attacking plays and a relentless level of physical fitness to close out their Dubai sevens campaign with a 34-0 thrashing of USA.

    After consistently building on their performance throughout their pool games against Japan, Russia and England, Australia came into the finals on Day 2 as one of the clear favourites for a top-four finish. Convincing wins over England and bogey team Canada then paved the way for Australia’s finals berth.

    After shocking the sevens world with a win over reigning series champions New Zealand in their quarter-final, USA struggled to keep pace with the intensity and speed of Australia in the final. Australia ended the first half 15-0 up with stars Emma Tonegato, Evania Pelite and Sharni Williams all crossing the try line. Australia then ran away with the win to finish the game 34-0 with a Dom Du Toit double and an ever-reliable Emilee Cherry five-pointer.

    The relief of coming away with a win in a cup final after so many close finishes the previous season was evident on the Australian players’ faces when the full-time whistle was blown. It will also serve as a massive confidence boost coming into the Sydney sevens in January 2018.

    (Image: Karen Watson)

    A key take away from the first leg of the series is the depth of Australia’s playing talent. With a number of high profile names missing from the squad, Australia’s new playing combinations proved to be a success.

    Debutante Page McGregor along with young guns Emma Sykes and Dom Du Toit all contributed heavily to Australia’s perfect record in Dubai. This demonstrates the strength of the development pathways in place for sevens players in Australia and the long-term vision of the team leading up to the next Olympic games in 2020.

    Despite plenty of positives in their overall dominance, Australia came away from the tournament with a lot to work on leading into the next round. Moments of poor handling, errors in judgement and rushed passes did not impact on the final outcome in Dubai but will hurt Australia if and when they come up against a switched-on New Zealand or Canada in future competitions.

    After the highs of the team’s Olympic gold win in 2016, the Australian players were the first to concede that they struggled to refocus and back up in their performances across the 2016-17 World Sevens Series. With a world series, Commonwealth Games and Sevens World Cup coming up next year, Australia’s Dubai sevens win may just be the catalyst the team needed to rebuild their record as the world’s number-one sevens team.

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    The Crowd Says (13)

    • Roar Guru

      December 3rd 2017 @ 11:18am
      PeterK said | December 3rd 2017 @ 11:18am | ! Report

      The women 7’s were very impressive, especially against Canada who beat them often last year.

      I like their improvement in speed, new moves (they were predictable last year), and physicality at the ruck.

      Lots of improvement to come in defence though.

      Also some stars to come back in from injury so only will get better.

    • December 3rd 2017 @ 1:20pm
      Muzzo said | December 3rd 2017 @ 1:20pm | ! Report

      Congrats to the Australian women for taking out the Dubai title. It was very impressive, especially in their speed on attack. It was so noticeable that so many of the teams, seem to be on the improve, as was seen by the US team taking out the Black Ferns in the quarters.
      What was also very noticeable,in the men’s tournament, of how rusty the winners, the Blitzebokke were. They will improve, as they have some fantastic talent, in the side. The likes of Kwagga Smith, Werner Kok, & the best outright back in the game Seabelo Senatla, showing that not only he has the speed, but all of the necessary skills as well.
      In my view this Blitzebokke, side will be the team to beat again, in this series.

    • December 3rd 2017 @ 7:32pm
      Cynical Play said | December 3rd 2017 @ 7:32pm | ! Report

      Pathetic that FTA TV cannot show this excellent team. How bout striking a deal for the next round RA? Get these women on TV and let the public get involved.

        • Roar Rookie

          December 5th 2017 @ 7:43pm
          piru said | December 5th 2017 @ 7:43pm | ! Report

          They will no doubt submit a list of demands TV must meet if it wants to show rugby

    • December 4th 2017 @ 9:56am
      Alice Shana said | December 4th 2017 @ 9:56am | ! Report

      These girls are incredible and a true inspiration to many young ladies out there. My young daughter has actually taken up the game thanks to these girls and I couldn’t be more thrilled! Congrats girls!

    • December 4th 2017 @ 10:12am
      mz.ilikazi said | December 4th 2017 @ 10:12am | ! Report

      Great start for the Australian girls. Well done.

      Interesting bit of trivia re Dominique du Toit…a Toowoomba girl now, but Zimbabwe born. Her great uncle is Stuart Watkins. of Wales…..he also played for the 1966 Lions. He is ranked in the top 10 best wingers of all time to have played for Wales.

      • December 5th 2017 @ 5:07am
        P2R2 said | December 5th 2017 @ 5:07am | ! Report


        • December 5th 2017 @ 11:23am
          ClarkeG said | December 5th 2017 @ 11:23am | ! Report

          If moving to Aust as a youngster merits the title ‘another import’ then an import she is.

        • December 5th 2017 @ 9:32pm
          Peter said | December 5th 2017 @ 9:32pm | ! Report

          Congratulations on winning today’s stupid comment award (unless you were being heavily post-modernist ironic?)

    • December 5th 2017 @ 8:24am
      Sherry said | December 5th 2017 @ 8:24am | ! Report

      I have over 500 channels where I live but not one of them showed the games. But, way to go ladies. Blanking the States doesn’t happen every day.

      • December 5th 2017 @ 11:08am
        ClarkeG said | December 5th 2017 @ 11:08am | ! Report

        If you happen to live in a region where the series is not broadcast on TV then you will be able to live stream it from the World Rugby website.

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