Moscow – Russia, June 30, 2013: After an enthralling tournament and two incredible finals, New Zealand are both the men’s and women’s Rugby World Cup Sevens 2013 champions.
New Zealand’s men emerged victorious after beating England 33-0 on a rain-soaked pitch at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow to claim the Melrose Cup. New Zealand’s women became world champions after they beat Canada 29-12 in a Sunday night showdown.
The last day of matches at the Olympic Stadium were delayed after a thunderstorm stopped play during the men’s semi-final between New Zealand and Fiji. But the weather couldn’t dampen the spirits of the New Zealanders, who will fly home from Moscow with both trophies.
After the final whistle, New Zealand captain DJ Forbes said: “This is truly a humbling experience and I’m almost lost for words. I’m just so proud of the boys. This win is for the boys, the management here and everyone back home. It’s really great to get another trophy.”
New Zealand’s women’s captain Huriana Manuel was ecstatic after the final whistle: “It feels amazing to be world champions. We have worked so hard for each other and we left it all out there on the field. I am so proud.”
“The weather conditions were hard but we expected that. We have something special in our team. It is more than rugby – we play for each other and that is all that matters.”
Earlier, in the men’s competition, hosts Russia sent the home crowd into raptures when they won the Bowl final by beating Japan, and Canada overcame Samoa to win the Plate final. The battle for third place was won by Fiji who overcame Kenya 29-5.
Fiji had further cause for celebration after they beat the Netherlands to win the women’s Bowl final, while a try near the end from Sharni Williams helped Australia beat England to win the Plate. USA beat Spain to finish the tournament in third place.
As the Rugby World Cup Sevens 2013 came to an end, IRB Chairman Bernard Lapasset said: “Players from 28 nations came to this wonderful venue here in Moscow and captivated us with their talent, skill and values.” “New stars were born and stars from past Rugby World Cup Sevens amazed us again. As we celebrate the success of an event that has broken new frontiers and taken our sport to new audiences, let us together wish the best for these players as they aim for the 2016 Olympic Games.