April 08, 2017
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Fiji beats NZ, cruises into quarters

Defending champion Fiji has progressed to the Cup quarterfinal of Hong Kong 7s after beating New Zealand 17-14 in a nail-biting clash at the So Kon Po Stadium tonight.

The Fijians were first to get on the score-board through Waisea Nacuqu and a successful conversion from Vatemo Ravouvou saw them lead 7-0.

New Zealand’s Fijian winger Joe Ravovou sprinted away to score for the Kiwis a minute later. Fellow Fijian Vilimoni Koroi converted to level scores 7-7.

Nacuqu connected well with Mesulame Kunavula and Isake Katonibau to score Fiji’s second try and give them a 12-7 halftime lead.

Regan Ware’s converted try after the break put New Zealand ahead for the first time in the match as they took a 14-12 lead.

New Zealand was temporarily reduced to 6 players for 2 minutes after Iopu Iopu-Aso was sin-binned for a high tackle on Jerry Tuwai.

With an extra man on the field, the Fijians managed to break away and score their third and winning try through Vatemo Ravouvou.

New Zealand toiled hard to score in the dying stages of the match but excellent defence by the Fijians saw them cling on till the final hooter.

By Reginald Chandar

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