Australia win World Series Sevens crown, Los Angeles Sevens, Rugby Australia, John Manenti, report, score, video

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One year after their sevens program was ripped up and halved, Australia’s men’s team are celebrating winning the World Series Sevens tournament for the first time.

After South Africa failed to make the quarter-finals, John Manenti’s side needed to come at least third to seal the World Series crown.

They stumbled against Fiji, but after a slow start against Samoa managed to find their groove and went on to record a 21-7 win to take out the bronze medal in Los Angeles and seal the World Series title.

World Series rugby commentator Rikki Swannell described the Australian team as a “bunch of misfits” and indeed they are, with Manenti going to the well and plucking some raw talent from club rugby.

“This medal is a reflection of the consistency the boys have shown. A lot of boys, not just these, a lot of other boys contributed,” Manenti said.

“It’s been a pretty amazing run.”

Australia is celebrating winning their maiden World Series Sevens crown. Photo: Getty Images
Australia is celebrating winning their maiden World Series Sevens crown. Photo: Getty ImagesSource: Getty Images

By winning the World Series Sevens they follow the lead of the women’s program, who earlier this year won their own title under Tim Walsh who was part of a coaching swap with Manenti.

“It’s very special. It’s very special,” Manenti said.

“Obviously Chuckie (James Stannard) and I were involved with both programs, so it’s nice to have the double.”

Corey Toole’s try in the fifth minute put the wheels in motion after Owen Niue’s opening try for Samoa.

A bit of fortune saw Henry Paterson pick up some scraps after Toole managed to squeeze a pass away and saw the tryscorer run away to put Australia in front.

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And when Dietrich Roache scored a try and converted his own five-pointed the game was as good as sewn up and the World Series locked up, with Fiji unable to win the series regardless of their result against New Zealand.

Corey Toole scored a crucial try in the bronze medal match against Samoa. Photo: Getty ImagesSource: Getty Images

Rugby Australia CEO Andy Marinos said he was “delighted” and paid tribute to Manenti’s job in “turning the program around”.

“It’s a great result. It’s fantastic,” Marinos told foxsports.com.au.

“It’s been about getting the right fit for what we’ve seen through the programs and by John and Tim have done a fantastic job.

“Full credit to John, not having a full 16 or 18 Man professional squad and bringing in players from Super, bringing them in from club rugby and galvanising them together as a team, it’s testament to the hard work that the guys have put in, and hopefully this can be a real big catalyst to not only attract more players but for more success to come.”

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