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Why Aussie captain wants France to beat NZ in Cup Final

By Finn Morton
(Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)

France stunned the rugby world on Saturday evening as they knocked reigning World Series champions Australia out of their home event in Sydney.


Well, technically they did it twice.

Home crowd favourites Australia were eliminated in the quarterfinals of the men’s competition in controversial fashion, as Thomas Carol converted a penalty attempt with the final play of the game.

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But that wasn’t the biggest surprise from Day Two.

Earlier in the day, the Australian Women’s Sevens team were also knocked out of the Cup Final race… by France… in the quarterfinals.

Chloe Pelle and Carla Neisen stunned the home crowd with a try each, and while Faith Nathan was able to claw one back, it wasn’t enough.

Australia were left to rue what could’ve been following the 5-10 defeat.


As the players walked down the North-West tunnel of Allianz Stadium, they were clearly disappointed.

Playing in front of their home fans, some for the first time in an Australian Sevens jersey, the champion team had fallen short of their ultimate goal.

While Australia usually rival New Zealand for Cup Final glory, that won’t be the case in Sydney.

Instead, the Black Ferns Sevens will look to overcome giant slayers France in a highly anticipated blockbuster on Sunday evening.


New Zealand were already beating Australia by four points on the World Series standing ahead of the Sydney Sevens, and will separate themselves even further regardless of the result.

Speaking after her sides convincing 34-12 win over Fiji in the fifth place playoff, Australian captain Charlotte Caslick revealed who she wants to win the final.

“I guess this season for us (is) all about qualification and we’ll remain in the top four which is our goal for the year,” Caslick told reporters.

“Hopefully France put on a really good show, obviously losing to them, we’d like them to take it out.


“For some of the girls they’d never been able to play at home before so it was a really huge occasion,” she added.

“I think we’ll take heaps out of yesterday, it was just a few moments under pressure that we didn’t capitalise (on) and we didn’t respect the ball.

“France have been awesome this whole campaign so we’re looking forward to seeing how they go in the final.”

Australia may have fallen short of Sydney Sevens glory, but there are still some positives to take away from this event.

Some young players, including the talent Teagan Levi, were given some valuable minutes to impress for the national team.

The countdown to next year’s Olympic Games in Paris is well and truly on, so Caslick said this experience will only benefit the Australians.

“In the grand scheme of things we’re obviously looking forward to Paris next year and securing that qualification this year, and then building towards that.

“I think we’ve learnt a lot out of this tournament.

“We’ve still got a really young side, I think Tegan Levi was really great today. I think the experience that she’s gotten from this tournament is going to be huge for her development.”


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RUGBYPASS+ Ireland are masters of all they survey, now for the World Cup Ireland are masters of all they survey, now for the World Cup