Sensational Fiji claim HSBC Singapore Rugby Sevens title on Series return

Updated: April 10, 2022

SINGAPORE — Fiji returned to the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series in style with a stunning victory in Singapore. The Olympic champions overcame rivals New Zealand 28-17 in a pulsating final to claim their first Series title since Sydney in January 2020.

New Zealand go away with a worthy silver medal from their first outing of the 2022 Series while
Australia beat an impressive Ireland 21-19 to clinch a hard fought bronze medal and remain in
contention for the 2022 Series title.

Prior to Singapore, South Africa had won all four rounds of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series
2022 to date – and six in total in a row – but in Singapore’s National Stadium it was to be Fiji’s day.
Having seen their incredible 36-match unbeaten run ended on Saturday evening by the USA in the
pool stage, the Series leaders South Africa lost again on Sunday to Fiji in the Cup quarter-finals and
then to Argentina in the fifth place semi-final.

Argentina went on to beat the USA 42-24 in a highly entertaining fifth place play-off

Fiji’s start to 2022 had not been so strong and they had to miss rounds three and four in Spain, but
here they showed they are back in business.

In a repeat of the Tokyo Olympic final, which Fiji won 27-12 last year, matches between Fiji and New
Zealand are often classics and today’s final did not disappoint.

Vuiviawa Naduvalo scored his ninth try of the weekend after two minutes to give Fiji the lead in this
one with Kaminieli Rasaku converting. Waisea Nacuqu then scored – and converted – Fiji’s second try
and they had a healthy 14-0 lead. Just before the break, Joseva Talacolo scored Fiji’s third try,
converted by Rasaku, and it got worse for New Zealand as Leroy Carter was yellow carded.

New Zealand needed the first try in the second half to give themselves any hope and a score came
from Regan Ware, but it was not converted. With Jerry Tuwai pulling the strings, Fiji’s fourth try
came through Naduvalo, his 10th of an amazing two days. Rasaku converted.

A Moses Leo try – converted by Akuila Rokolisoa – and then an unconverted effort from Caleb
Tangitau for New Zealand made the final score 28-17.

Fiji captain Tevita Daugunu said: “It was a very good final. We knew we had to keep the ball away
from New Zealand and for most of this final we did just that.

“The team stuck to the game plan perfectly and with it being Palm Sunday back home we hope this
has made our family, friends and supporters happy.”

Player of the Final Naduvalo, who scored 10 tries over the course of the weekend said: “I am so
happy, it has taken a lot of sacrifice for me to get this far and that is why I was so emotional during
our national anthem. This victory is for my family, they are my ‘why’, they drive me on and I want to
make them proud.”

New Zealand captain Sam Dickson said: “We can be proud of our efforts. We had five debutants in
this tournament and they all did extremely well and did the black jersey proud so we will take a lot
away from it.

“The good thing about the Sevens Series is we have got another tournament next weekend and we
will be ready to go again in Vancouver, which is one of our favourite tournaments and we will be
looking to repeat our winning performance last time we were there in 2020.”

Singapore Sevens Media Release

Photo credit: Singapore Sevens