The Blitzboks lost both their matches on the final day of the Hong Kong Sevens Tournament after a clean slate in the pool rounds and missed out on playing for the fifth place – but they had the good fortune that England suffered the same fate.
These two teams, vying for the fourth place at the end the series lost, to Argentina and the All Blacks respectively with the Boks ill-discipline in the areas of high-tackling and ruck infringements costing them the match against Argentina (17-19) and England, starved of the ball in especially the first half, going down to New-Zealand (10-17).
South Africa’s nine-point lead on the series standings therefore remains intact with both sides earning only ten points for their tied seventh place. Both are however now out of what was in any event an improbably charge for the series title.
The first four teams in the final 2018/19 standings have automatic qualification for next year's Olympic Games.
♦ France made history when they qualified for their first Hong Kong final by beating Samoa 19-12 in the semi-final. Fiji had reached yet another final with a chance to add to their four successive Hong Kong titles after beating the USA 28-19.
It is France’ second successive final after losing the Vancouver title match against South Africa in the previous tournament. The USA have now, after five finals including their first title – at home in Las Vegas – missed out in playing in the tournament showpiece for the second consecutive time.
♦ Ireland qualified as a core team in the 2019/2020 World Rugby Sevens Series when they beat Hong Kong 28-7 in the final of the qualifiers.
12:30 USA vs Samoa
13:00 Fiji vs France