England vs New Zealand – USA Sevens Rugby
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Cup Qtr FinalsSam Boyd Stadium03/04/201709:22 PMUSA Sevens

England Hammered New Zealand’s defense for the first couple minutes, but a great team effort, including a try-saving tackle by Tim Mikkelson on Dan Norton, helped New Zealand hang on until a penalty could force a turnover. New Zealand’s resilience put the All Blacks Sevens in front first, as captain DJ Forbes dotted it down and Isaac Te Tamaki drove the conversion through. New Zealand threatened several more times to build on the lead, but England held tough to reach the second half down just one score.

The ninth minute saw England let the deficit grow when Mikkelson crashed through for a converted try. England was certainly not out of the game with more than four minutes remaining. As this English contingent had just shown against team USA in the pool decider, it can come back in a moment. The challenge grew rougher when Mikkelson turned the corner of the English defense, chipped forward and powered the ball to the ground for his second try of the half. Trailing 19–0, England faced a steep hill with 2:26 left at the restart. What little hope had remained began to evaporate when England’s captain Tom Mitchell mishandled the restart, giving New Zealand a scrum with 1:45 left. England got the ball back, but time continued to tick away. With seconds left, New Zealand won a penalty. The kick to touch left a need for the lineout, which New Zealand won. Kicking the ball for touch, the All Blacks Sevens kept the chance of completing New Zealand sweep of the 2017 USA Sevens. An always dangerous Fiji awaits on Day 3.