England win Hertz Sevens in Wellington after dramatic victory over Kenya in final
Last Updated: 02/02/13 1:30pm
England: Erased memories of their poor start to the season
England were crowned champions of the Hertz Sevens in Wellington after securing a dramatic 24-19 victory over Kenya in the final.
Sam Edgerley scored the winning try in extra time after Christian Lewis-Pratt had levelled the contest with the clock expired at the end of regulation.
Lewis-Pratt and Dan Norton had crossed earlier in the match, while Horace Otieno, Oscar Ouma and Willy Ambaka all touched down for Kenya.
The African side led 19-12 in the closing stages of the second half but yellow cards for both Ouma and Andrew Amonde left their ranks depleted and Lewis-Pratt capitalised on the numerical advantage to cross under the posts.
He added the conversion to force a sudden-death extra period and with Kenya still a man down, a quick pick up and go allowed Edgerley to cross for the decisive try.
England claim Sevens title
The victory was made all the more remarkable by the fact that England had not even made the Cup quarter-finals at any of the previous three HSBC Sevens World Series events this season.
"I'm lost for words a little bit. We've had a bad start (to the season). We are pretty fed up with losing and we wanted it stop that," England head coach Ben Ryan said.
"We worked so hard these last two months to make sure that all the people back home who saw disappointing performances from England were going to see them corrected.
"I'm just so proud of the lads, their defence today was outstanding. We played with real pride for our shirt."
They kicked off their campaign on Saturday with a comfortable 31-7 victory over Scotland in the last eight before going on to edged out Samoa 21-19 in the semi-finals.
Scotland went on to lose 22-7 to Australia in the second-tier Plate final, while Wales won the fourth-tier Shield final with a 36-21 victory over Tonga.
Kenya missed out on their first win in a Cup final but have now climbed to second in the overall standings behind New Zealand, who they beat in the semi-finals.