The USA claimed a 29-10 victory over the Blitzboks in their Las Vegas Sevens Cup quarter-final. DYLAN JACK reports.
In the 50th meeting between the sides, the hosts were largely dominant, disrupting the Blitzboks momentum at the breakdown and using their powerful runners to good effect.
The Blitzboks will meet rivals Fiji, who lost their Cup quarter-final against New Zealand, in the fifth-place semi-finals at 10:28pm on Sunday (SA time).
The USA, yet to lose a Cup quarter-final this season, started strongly, taking a tighthead at a scrum before Danny Barrett powered his way over for the opening try.
A couple of minutes later, Steve Tomasin was freed up out wide and ran from his own 22 for the USA’s second of the evening, before Martin Iosefo got the hosts’ third try after a break from Carlin Isles to allow the USA to take a 19-0 lead at the break.
The Blitzboks created a couple of opportunities through their speedsters, but struggled to deal with the home side’s physicality, with Barrett, in particular, putting in a couple of massive hits.
The second half did not get much better for the South Africans as Isles burst from the back of a ruck and dotted down in the corner, before Matai Leuta scored straight from the ensuing kick-off to make it a 29-point deficit.
Replacement JC Pretorius managed a brave late cameo, grabbing his second try of the tournament, with Stedman Gans adding a second to bring some gloss to an otherwise dour Blitzboks performance.
Photo: Jordan Mansfield/Getty Images