31 Jul 2021

Tokyo Olympics: Fijiana stun Australia, set up semis clash with Black Ferns

12:34 am on 31 July 2021

The Fiji women's sevens rugby side are through to the semi-finals of the Tokyo Olympics after shocking defending champions Australia 14-12 in their quarter-final last night.

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Photo: World Rugby

Alowesi Nakoci gave the Fijiana their dream start with a try as Fiji led 7-nil.

Ana Maria Naimasi scored Fiji's second try to extend their lead to 14-nil.

Vasiti Solikoviti was sin binned for a high tackle - Fiji reduced to six players.

Faith Nathan grabbed a try back for Australia and cut Fiji's lead to 14-5 at half-time.

Australia scored a late try but it wasn't enough as Fiji progressed to the semi-finals against New Zealand.

Earlier, the Fijiana defeated Brazil 41-5 to book their spot in the playoffs.

Fijiana ran a total of seven tries, with Reapi Uluinasau scoring four of them. Other tries were scored by Laisani Likuceva and Nakoci.

Fiji won two of their three pool games, losing to France before coming together for a stunning 26-12 win over the 2016 bronze medalists Canada on Thursday.

The New Zealand Black Ferns Sevens notched up clinical back-to-back wins over the Russian Olympic Committee to ease into the semis against the Fijiana.

The Ferns accounted for the Russians 36-0 in their quarter-final, leading 17-0 at half-time after tries to Theresa Fitzpatrick, Tyla Nathan-Wong, Gayle Broughton and Michaela Blyde.

Portia Woodman scored a double after the main break, with Ruby Tui also crossing as the New Zealanders wrapped up the win.

The victory was a repeat of the Black Ferns Sevens' final pool match against the same team, delayed one and a half hours due to the threat of lightning, but won 33-0 by the New Zealanders.

Once it was deemed safe to kick-off, New Zealand opened their account with Tui and Stacey Fluhler scoring two tries each, while Woodman also dotted down.

The Black Ferns face the Fijiana later today.

Fiji's champion sevens team arrive home.

Fiji's champion sevens team arrive home. Photo: Fiji Rugby

Fiji celebration plan

Meanwhile, discussions are underway for a national celebration in Fiji to commemorate the men's gold medal victory on Wednesday.

Fiji Rugby Union chief executive John O'Connor said plans were in place for a grand sevens party in the country which is suffering from the Covid-19 pandemic.

The side arrived home yesterday and are in quarantine for 14 days.

"We will have discussions with all the stakeholders and see how we can celebrate their victory," O'Connor said.

The former Lautoka rugby rep also congratulated the team for winning for Fiji during these trying times.

"I think the players understand that it's tough times," he said.

Fiji beat New Zealand 27-12 in the final and successfully defended their Olympic title.

Fiji defeated Great Britain 43-7 at the Rio Games in 2016.