Defence Won Us The Game: Baker

“It’s a tough game as expected and we came out on top. The players love the challenge and as well for the fans.”
04 Mar 2019 16:12
Defence Won Us The Game: Baker

Defence won us the game, says veteran New Zealand 7s playmaker Kurt Baker af­ter their 19-14 triumph over Fiji in the Cup quarterfinals of the USA 7s yesterday.

“You know in sevens all teams can attack but we worked on our de­fence,” he said.

“It’s a tough game as expected and we came out on top. The players love the challenge and as well for the fans.”

Baker scored the winning try after they were trailing 14-12.

The Fijians had taken a 7-5 lead at halftime when Jerry Tuwai scored the first of his two tries, which were both converted by Vilimoni Botitu.

Head coach Gareth Baber made positional changes after playmaker Waisea Nacuqu was ruled out with injury.

Sevuloni Mocenacagi after serv­ing a four-match ban started at rov­er with Botitu at the playmaker’s role while Paula Dranisinukula got the start ahead of Mesulame Kuna­vula.


USA winger Carlin Isles is looking forward to today’s Cup semi-final clash against New Zealand.

“I’m looking forward to a good rematch,” Isles said after they had lost to New Zealand in the Cup final of the Sydney 7s last month.

He said they are determined to put on a good show in front of their fans and defend the USA title.

“We clicked today against South Africa and we had to be physical and it was good.”

USA bounced back from their shock 26-24 loss to Argentina in their pool clash to trounce a young Blitzboks side 29-10 to make it to the Cup semi-finals.

The Americans have played in the Cup finals of the Dubai, Cape Town, Hamilton and Sydney tour­naments.


An emotional Samoan 7s captain David Afamasaga said their gutsy performance was the reason they upset Australia 21-20 in the Cup quarterfinal of the USA 7s.

“I thank God because today we just lifted our game,” he said.

“It’s been a while for Samoa to make it to the Cup semi-final but we’ve done it.”

Afamasaga said they also give credit to Australia for giving them a tough game.

“We just fought to the end and that was why we won. The reserves came in and they just did their job,” he added.

Edited by Osea Bola


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