Canada’s women’s sevens team finished in third place at the Clermont Sevens after beating hosts France 36-7 in the Bronze Final Sunday evening at Stade Gabriel Montpied in Clermont-Ferrand, France.
It was Canada’s fifth straight top-three finish on the series.
Canada was playing for Bronze after a 19-14 defeat to Australia in the Cup Semifinals. The loss to Australia meant Canada will finish in third place in the 2016-17 HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series. Canada and Australia were tied for second in the series standings heading into the weekend. It marks the fifth season in a row Canada has finished in the top three of the HSBC World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series standings.
Earlier in the day, Canada beat Ireland 31-0 in the Cup Quarterfinals.
After scoring two tries in the quarterfinal match against Ireland, Ghislaine Landry became just the third woman in series history to score 100 tries. With 269 points this year, it is the second straight season Landry has led the series in scoring. She remains the all-time leading scorer on the series with 844 points.
This was the last tournament for veteran Ashley Steacy, who is retiring from Canada’s women’s sevens team.
What head coach John Tait said:
“It was disappointing to lose that last one to Australia, we played a lot of defense and had very little possession. When we kept the ball moving against them we scored, unfortunately we didn’t do that enough in the second half to get that winning try. Really pleased though that the team didn’t let it affect them in the final against France and came out and were clinical with the ball and finished this season with a solid performance from everyone.”
“I think it was our strongest year to date. We did finish third overall but when you consider we started off in Dubai with a sixth place finish coming off the Olympic recovery, injuries to key players and younger players taking on bigger roles, finishing third was a big achievement for us this season. It was really encouraging to see the depth of talent we now have that can compete consistently with anyone. We believe we have the strongest overall squad and it’s not a matter of if, but when, that we will be winning the World Series. We still have a lot of growth potential in our skillsets and game sense and we have a fairly young squad so I’m confident we will be capable of sustaining podium finishes into the future. We will target winning the series next season and then take that momentum into the Sevens World Cup and go one better than we did in Moscow 2013 and win gold there.”
CANADA 31-0 IRELAND
It was a dominating 31-0 Cup Quarterfinal victory for Canada, their biggest-ever win over Ireland.
The Canadians were backed by two tries each from captain Ghislaine Landry and Bianca Farella, while Kaili Lukan added some insurance in the closing seconds to further the lopsided the score line.
Canada improved to 6-0 all-time in the series vs Ireland.
CANADA 14-19 AUSTRALIA
There was lots on the line in this match but it was the Olympic champions prevailing 19-14 in another close match between two of the best teams in the world.
Australia controlled much of the possession in the match, but when Canada had ball in hand they were aggressive on the attack. Canada held a 14-7 lead at half through tries from Julia Greenshields and Britt Benn but were unable to touch down in the second half as Australia scored 12 unanswered points in the final seven minutes.
CANADA 36-7 FRANCE
Canada proved there was no letdown after the loss to Australia in the Cup Quarterfinals as they put in a clinical performance against France to claim the bronze medal at the Clermont Sevens.
Charity Williams led the way with four tries, setting an all-time Canadian record for most tries scored in a World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series match.
Ghislaine Landry added a try and two conversions, giving her 269 points on the season.
Julia Greenshields was the other try scorer for Canada while Ashley Steacy, playing in her final match with the team, chipped in with a conversion.