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England Sevens face South Africa in Hong Kong quarters

29 March 2014

  • England to play South Africa in quarter finals
  • Amor's charges beat Portugal and Canada on day two
Dan Norton

Photo: Getty Images

England will play South Africa in the quarter finals of the Cathay Pacific HSBC Hong Kong Sevens after beating Portugal 21-7 and Canada 14-12 on day two.

The second game determined who finished top of pool C and England came twice from behind with two tries from Dan Norton.

In all matches, including the 21-19 result over Argentina yesterday evening, the score has been level 7-7 at half-time and it was a Norton try against Portugal which kept England in the game before Dan Bibby added the additional 16 points.

Summing up the first two days, Head Coach Simon Amor said: “I’m pleased with the results, three difficult matches and much of the last few days has been about managing the squad to make sure they are in the best shape possible for tomorrow.  With the short turnaround from Tokyo it was all about the recovery and getting through those group games.

“We have had mixed results against South Africa but it doesn’t really matter who you draw on finals day, they are always tough fixtures.  We will recover well tonight and give our best shot in the morning.”

A heavy downpour just before England took to the field suspended play for 20 minutes and on a sodden pitch it was Portugal who took the lead through Vasco Mendes before a chip and chase by Norton and the conversion from Bibby made it 7-7.

After the break Jack Walsh came close to his first England try but slipped on the wet surface.  His pop pass from the ground to Bibby allowed the fly half to touch down for his first try and an offload out the tackle from Alex Gray created his second.

Canada lost out to England 14-10 in the Tokyo quarter finals and started today’s pool decider with intent.  They dominated territory and possession until Philip Mack scored and Nathan Hirayrama converted.

Aggressive breakdown play by Phil Burgess provided turnover ball and set up Norton to run the length of the field and put England’s first points on the board five minutes later. Tom Mitchell converted.

Canada regained the lead immediately into the second half through John Moonlight but the missed conversion proved costly as a second Norton try and a further two points from Mitchell took the final score to 14-12. 

England play South Africa tomorrow at 4:50am BST after the current HSBC World Series leaders were beaten 10-7 by Australia and finished runners-up in pool B. Coverage starts on Sky Sports 3 from 4.25am BST.