Seabelo Senatla hunts down Paula Dranisinukula, but the Fijians still managed to score in the Hamilton Sevens final. Photo: @WorldRugby7s via Twitter

In a thrilling final on Sunday, Fiji came back from 17-5 down at halftime to engineer a dramatic turnaround and win the Hamilton Sevens title 24-17 against the Blitzboks at the Waikato Stadium.

Kwagga Smith, Kyle Brown and Branco du Preez dotted down in the opening seven minutes, and a conversion by Cecil Afrika produced a 12-point lead.

But a yellow card to Blitzbok speedster Du Preez - for an off-the-ball tackle - was a huge setback for the South Africans.

Alosio Naduva was the hero for the Fijians, scoring a hat trick of tries.

The islanders got their rhythm going in the second half, producing their traditional free-flowing game.

There were some amazing offloads, none more so than one from Kalioni Nasoko that also led to a try.

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Two missed conversions by the Blitzboks meant that they needed to get a full seven-pointer in the closing stages to take the decider into extra time.

In the end, Vatemo Ravouvou slotted a second conversion for Fiji.


Blitzboks 17 – Tries: Kwagga Smith, Kyle Brown, Branco du Preez. Conversion: Cecil Afrika (1).

Fiji 24 – Tries: Alosio Naduva (3), Eroni Sau. Conversions: Amenoni Nasilasila (1), Vatemo Ravouvou (1).

IOL Sport