The British men’s rugby sevens team finished fourth in the final of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics after losing to Fiji in the quarter-final.
|Dates: July 23rd to August 8th, Tokyo time: BST +8|
|Watch on TV, iPlayer, Red Button, and online; listen on Radio 5 Live, Sports Extra, and Sounds; and read live text and video snippets on the Sport website and app.|
For the second Olympics in a row, Great Britain’s women’s sevens team was denied a medal when a quick, powerful Fiji won their bronze-medal match 21-12.
Alowesi Nakoci of Fiji scored two tries in the first half, while Reapi Ulunisau added a breakaway score after the interval.
Megan Jones responded with two goals, but Fiji proved to be too strong in the end.
Fiji’s bronze medal is the country’s first ever female Olympic medal.
At the same stage of the Rio 2016 competition, Great Britain fell to Canada, while the men’s team finished fourth in Tokyo.
In August, both the men’s and women’s teams lost their financing. Despite reaching a short-term agreement with the National Lottery in December, their preparations have been severely hampered by a series of Covid lockdowns.
“You can definitely see by our expressions that we’re devastated,” Jasmine Joyce told Sport.
“We’re Team GB as a team, but we’re three separate countries, and we’ve only been together for four or five months.” We didn’t have anything six months ago; we didn’t have employment, we didn’t have anything.
“So to come out here, finish fourth, push New Zealand all the way to the end, defeat the USA in the quarter-finals, and lose to Fiji – a very strong team – I couldn’t be more pleased of the ladies.”
“We’ve placed our program in a much stronger position. We have the right to call ourselves Olympians.”
While the Rugby Football Union, as well as its Scottish and Welsh equivalents, have all said that a sevens program would continue, nothing has been confirmed beyond Tokyo 2020, with the sport set to be part of the Commonwealth Games in less than a year.
Fiji will compete in that tournament, and they have already shown that they will be a serious contender for gold following a strong finish to this season.
On their route to a medal in Tokyo, they defeated Rio bronze medalists in the pool stages, knocked out reigning champions Australia in the last eight, and took eventual winners New Zealand to extra time in their semi-final.
The men’s team of Fiji successfully defended their Rio championship earlier this week.
The Black Ferns have finally won gold.
From a silver medal at Rio 2016, New Zealand has improved.
With a 26-12 victory against France in the gold-medal match, New Zealand justified their pre-tournament reputation and exorcised the demons of their 2016 final loss by Australia in Rio.
Following their Olympic loss five years ago, the Black Ferns have dominated the women’s game, winning the last four World Sevens tournaments until the series was halted in early 2020 because to the Covid-19 epidemic.
Throughout the competition, their pride and enthusiasm were evident in viral post-match interviewsexternal-link.
France, on the other hand, shown that patriotism is not a monopoly. Anne-Cecile Ciofani was in tears when La Marseillaise performed before the last chapter of their Cinderella journey, since the underdogs only qualified for the Games via a repechage competition in June.
New Zealand, on the other hand, burst into tears as the speed and finishing skills of Michaela Blyde, Gayle Broughton, and Stacey Fluhler propelled them to four tries and an easy victory.