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South Africa, China book place in Paris for rugby sevens

South Africa have qualified for the men’s Rugby Sevens competition at the Paris Olympics following a 14-5 victory over Britain in Sunday’s final of the Repechage qualification tournament being staged in Monaco.

Quewin Nortje and Shilton van Wyk both scored tries for South Africa in the first-half who led by nine points at the break. Neither side was able to add to their score in the second half.

South Africa, who were bronze medallists at the 2016 Olympics but finished fifth in Tokyo 2020, had to go through the Repechage tournament after they were stunned by Kenya in the final of the African qualifiers last September.

They have struggled for form since former coach Neil Powell left to join the Durban-based Sharks at the start of the 2022-23 United Rugby Championship season.

China qualified for the women’s competition in Paris earlier on Sunday following a 24-7 win over Kenya in their final.

Chen Keyi scored two tries as China dominated their opponents to qualify for back-to-back Olympics having finished seventh at the Tokyo Games three years ago.

They join 11 other countries in the women’s field in Paris that includes defending champions New Zealand, Australia, Fiji and Britain.

The Rugby Sevens competition at the Olympics is scheduled to run from July 24-30 at the Stade de France.

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Written by Charles Daisi

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