England recorded a dramatic 29-21 win over Samoa in the Cup final while the Blitzboks clinched the Plate on day two of the Dubai Sevens.
Defending champions were favourites to win the opening World Series tournament, but they were challenged by an impressive England side. In the first half, both teams scored two tries for a 14-12 scoreline at the break.
Alafoti Fa’osiliva then scored early in the second half. With seven minutes left in the match, it seemed that Samoa had control of the game as they were cruising 21-12 ahead. However, England scored three tries, two in the last two minutes of play, through Simon Hunt, Dan Norton and Matt Turner for the victory.
For the Blitzboks, it was a positive finish after a disappointing day one. Cecil Afrika was the star of the weekend as he scored all the points in the Plate final. This saw the speedster finish as the tournament’s top points (72) and try (9) scorer.
The Bliztboks showed great character in the comeback win as they were down 12-0 inside the first three minutes -Hamish Angus and Daniel Yakapo gave the Australians an early lead before Afrika grabbed a try before the break.
South Africa gained ascendancy in the second half as they scored 12 unanswered points to seal the win. Afrika finishing off his hat-trick with two tries.
In the Plate semi-final, South Africa beat USA 24-10.
They led 12-0 at the break and captain Kyle Brown sealed the result with a converted try just after the restart. USA hit back with two tries but Paul Treu’s charges sprung back to life to deny the Eagles a dramatic come from behind victory.
Earlier in the day they were knocked out of the Cup quarter-final after a 21-19 defeat to Fiji.
The South Africans led 19-7 at one stage through tries by Afrika, Boom Prinsloo and Bernardo Botha, but succumbed to a final minute try.
They defended well initially, standing strong in the tackle and competing well at the breakdown. However, they made fundamental errors that allowed the islanders a lifeline, and were duly punished