Women off to flying start at Dubai Sevens
29 November 2013
RUGBY SEVENS: Australian Women’s Sevens coach Tim Walsh has described himself as “pretty happy” after Australia swept their first three matches on day 1 of the IRB Women's Sevens World Series opening round in Dubai to set up a quarter final against England here on Friday.
“We executed a few things that we were aiming to do,” said Walsh. “So three out of three. Good start.”
Australia started with a 38-10 win over Brazil before following it up with an even more impressive 31-0 victory over France.
Outstanding for Australia, as usual, was captain Sharni Williams but she was matched by speedster Emilee Cherry, who crossed for four tries, and wings Ellia Green and Rachel Crothers, who both crossed for a treble.
So comfortable was Walsh going into the last game that he rested Green from the starting seven.
“Ellia is jet shoes but we’ve got a couple there so we like to balance it out” Walsh explained. “When you’ve got 12 players and a couple of days of intense games where you can you preserve some players.”
Walsh was also disappointed in Australia’s final match where he felt they made far too many mistakes before beating Canada 17-0.
“I am pleased but it’s all about the second day” he said. “Last game (against Canada) we would have turned the ball over six times, so very disappointing but we did keep them to nil so defence certainly a key player there.”
Australia’s major rival for the title tomorrow will be New Zealand who were their awesome best trouncing Fiji 33-7, Ireland 29-0 and the USA 31-0 to finish as the No.1 seed after Day 1, just ahead of Australia.
Asked if Australia could beat New Zealand Walsh answered: “Of course we can. We take it one game at a time but we beat them recently in an Oceania competition so they are fantastic team, don’t get me wrong, but at our best we can beat them.”
Australia’s quarter final against England will be at 12.46pm (7.46pm AEDT). In the other quarter finals New Zealand will take on bolters Brazil, Spain will play Canada and impressive Russia will meet the USA in the clash of the super powers.