Rugby Sevens: France Wins Women’s Grand Prix Sevens

France’s women’s rugby seven team booked its spot to the Olympics after winning the overall title from the Women’s Grand Prix Sevens. The Grand Prix Sevens consisted of two 12 team competitions where nations are given ranking points based on their performance. The first competition was held in Kazan, Russia from June 13th to June 14th 2015 while the second event was held in Malemort, France from June 20th to June 21st 2015. The team with the most points qualified to the Olympics while the second place team qualified to the final Olympic qualifying tournament. While England, Wales and Scotland competed at the grand prix they cannot qualify to the Olympics as Great Britain has already qualified.

The group stage of the first competition went as expected with World Seven Series core teams England, France and Russia winning all of their matches. All three along with fellow core team Spain reached the semifinals. In the end Russia and France powered through Spain and England respectively to reach the final. In the final France took an early lead of 10-7 at the half. Russia however using the points it gained through successful conversions was able to come back and win the first tournament 19-15.

The group stage for the second competition was going as expected until Netherlands upset France in the final game winning, 20-10. The upset caused France and Russia to meet each other in the semifinals. Like in their first match France went into an early lead, leading 14-5 at half-time. However Russia was unable to come back a second time as France won the match 14-10. France met Spain at the final and with Russia winning the third place match France needed to win the tournament if they wanted to qualify to the Olympics. France was able to do just that by shutting out Spain with a score of 20-0.

While Russia just missed out in qualifying to the Olympics they will have another chance at the final qualification tournament. All the other nations that competed at the Grand Prix, minus England, Wales and Scotland will compete at the repechage tournament with other European nations to determine the other three teams that will join Russia at the final qualification tournament.

Grand Prix Rankings

  1. France – 38
  2. Russia – 36
  3. Spain – 32
  4. England – 30
  5. Ireland – 24
  6. Netherlands – 20
  7. Wales – 14
  8. Italy – 9
  9. Ukraine – 8
  10. Portugal – 7
  11. Scotland – 6
  12. Germany – 4

References

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