England reach last eight

England booked their place in the knock-out stages of the IRB world series sevens tournament in Brisbane with an impressive 21-14 victory over Sevens specialists Fiji.

England booked their place in the knock-out stages of the IRB world series sevens tournament in Brisbane with an impressive 21-14 victory over Sevens specialists Fiji.

The star of the show was Harlequins wing Ben Gollings, who scored two tries and converted them himself after Newcastle’s Phil Dowson had bundled over England’s first touchdown, also goaled by Gollings.

Fiji had led 14-0 before England fought back, Raymond Rodan and Nasoni Rokobiau scoring tries which the latter converted.

The victory gave England a 100% record in their group, though they had not looked as convincing in their first two Pool D games against the Cook Islands and Japan.

Former Bradford Bulls rugby league star Nathan McAvoy played a decisive role in the 22-19 win over Japan.

McAvoy, who signed for Zurich Premiership club Saracens earlier this week, scored two tries.

England fell behind early after Japan’s Yohei Shinomiya capitalised on a Henry Paul defensive blunder, but McAvoy then produced a dazzling 70-metre solo run to tie the scores.

Further tries by McAvoy, Northampton scrum-half Johnny Howard and Gollings saw England pull away. Japan though, fought back with two touchdowns to make the final scoreline worryingly close from England’s perspective.

Earlier, Saracens wing Richard Haughton had claimed a try double as England won group opener against the Cook Islands 21-0.

Bath back Rob Thirlby also claimed a touchdown and Gollings landed all three conversions.

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