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All Blacks sevens pip Kenya in Paris

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 14/05/2016
Akira Ioane © Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images Akira Ioane

New Zealand have scored after the final hooter to beat Kenya 19-17 and complete pool play unbeaten at the Paris sevens tournament.

The All Blacks Sevens held their nerve to set up a patient, length-of-the-field try to Gillies Kaka, capping a comeback from 17-7 down midway through the second half.

The result sets up a quarter-final against Argentina in the penultimate round of the 10-leg circuit.

New Zealand are third in the series, behind leaders Fiji and South Africa, who were also unbeaten in pool play along with France.

The first two games caused few problems for the New Zealanders, who brushed aside lightweights Russia 35-10 and Portugal 31-0. Lewis Ormond scored a hat-trick against Portugal to give him five tries in pool play.

They were outplayed for long periods by Kenya, who won the circuit's previous tournament in Singapore.

Collins Injera, Sammy Oliech and captain Andrew Amonde all scored for the Africans after Akira Ioane had powered over early for New Zealand.

Ioane's younger brother Rieko then showed his class, scorching 60m to reduce the lead to three points before playing a prominent role in the lead-up to Kaka's match-winner.

The Kiwis are without three seasoned sevens campaigners in Liam Messam, Tim Mikkelson and DJ Forbes, all forced out through injury.

All Blacks flanker Messam will also miss next week's final tournament in London.

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