Fiji‘s bid for sevens silverware has come up short yet again as Samoa‘s World Cup tournament ended in controversy in San Francisco.
Having outclassed Japan 35-10 and Argentina 43-7 enroute to the semi finals, the World Series runners-up let a half-time slip to lose 22-17 to New Zealand, the same team that denied them Commonwealth Games gold in April.
The Fijians were then denied a consolation medal after being 24-19 by South Africa in the bronze playoff.
Samoa‘s Sevens World Cup has finished under a cloud after an unnamed player was suspended for the final day‘s play.
In a statement, World Rugby said a Samoan player was provisionally suspended from the tournament “following an initial investigation into an alleged incident in the tunnel area after a match between Samoa and Wales” on Sunday.
“The alleged behaviour is not aligned with the sport‘s values and the excellent spirit in which this competition has been played by the 40 participating teams.”
The Manu were beaten 24-19 by Wales in the Challenge quarter finals on day two, having been knocked out of Championship contention a day earlier by England in the Round of 16.
While World Rugby refused to name the player, Gordon Langkilde was the only member of the Manu sevens squad not to feature in Monday‘s 19-17 victory over Kenya and 22-17 win against Russia in the 13th place playoff.
Meanwhile Papua New Guinea have beaten Tonga 31-14 in an all Pacific affair to finish in 21st and 22nd place respectively.
Earlier the Pukpuks had thrashed Jamaica 52-7 to record their first ever World Cup win.
“It means so much to us. Every time we take the field we‘re playing for our family and friends back at home,” said an emotional Pukpuks flyer Emmanuel Guise.
“It‘s always good to have a win and history has been made today, our first win in a World Cup.”
The Women‘s World Cup concluded at the weekend with the Fijiana finishing 11th and Papua New Guinea thrashing Mexico to avoid the wooden spoon.