Great Britain men and women lit up Swansea on the opening day of competition at the World University Championship Rugby 7s as both sides went unbeaten.
St. Mary’s Samir Kharbouch shone as Great Britain’s men – champions in 2012 and 2014 –opened up their title defence with two wins from two.
Kharbouch and Cardiff Metropolitan University’s Christopher Levesley both ran in two tries against the Czech Republic and captain Samuel Pointon also crossed in a ten-try 59-0 win.
35-10 win over Italy in their second game meant Pointon, 23, finished the day in high spirits.
“There is a little bit of pressure, but we have brilliant team spirit and the end-game is to win gold, but we’re not getting too ahead of ourselves,” the Loughborough University student said.
Australia ran in nine tries of their own against the Czech Republic for a 57-0 win and turned in another strong performance against Namibia to set up a mouth-watering Pool A clash with hosts Great Britain on day two.
Lesly Klim grabbed a hat-trick as the Namibians sparkled in their 40-12 win over Italy, but came undone against the Aussies and Uniroos vice-captain Michael Adams, 24, feels they have laid down a marker.
“We came here because we want to win, anytime you put an Australian jersey on you want to win. Today we have proved we are a definite contender,” the University of Sydney star said.
France are unbeaten in Pool B after easing past Malaysia and Spain, while the Spanish are still in the hunt for a semi-final spot after defeating Argentina 14-12.
Lucy Nye’s Great Britain women edged Italy 12-0 in a tight opening encounter as Hartpury College flyer Kelly Smith showed all her pace and guile to run in two tries.
Champions in 2012, the hosts are aiming to dethrone holders Canada on home soil and Smith’s Hartpury teammate Hannah Jones’ two tries boosted their hopes in a 27-7 win over New Zealand.
Surprise package China then dominated Australia Women 10-0 to cap an excellent day after edging out Spain 15-7. And their coach Jia Wen Pei was ecstatic with the way her side performed.
“Our side is very young, and we have many injured players, so to win today shows thatwe have worked very hard and played a great game,” she explained.
Defending women’s champions Canada squeaked through their opening game 14-12with Portugal missing a last-gasp conversion that would have secured a draw before turning on the style to beat Spain 17-5.
Top of the pools going into tomorrow are GB and France for the men with P.R. China and GB on the womens’ side.
Current pool standings can be found under the results tab on the championship website: http://www.wucrugby2016.com/
The Championships started officially with an Opening Ceremony at Swansea University on the evening of Wednesday 6 July. Matches are ticketed from Thursday 7 July – Saturday 9 July.
A fun-filled spectator village which will be available during the tournament where there will also be food and beverages on offer and family friendly entertainment and The Wave will be broadcasting during the day on Saturday – finals and medal presentation day.
All matches will be live streamed via www.youtube.com/FISUTV
Tickets are £3 (Child) £5 (Adult).Tickets can be purchased at the gate or online at http://wucrugby2016.com/news.htm?id=19
The full three day schedule can be found on the event website
Official event hashtag #WUCRugby7s2016
Pictures: Day 2 - GB v Australia mens and France v Italy womens . Please credit the pictures to Capture the Event
- Friday 8 July 2016 14.15 BST
- Friday 8 July 2016 18.07 BST
- Swansea University, Tel: 01792 295050