Dubai Sevens MVP Australia's Evania Pelite
Dubai Sevens MVP Australia's Evania Pelite Themba Hadebe

Olympic champs are back to gold medal form in Dubai

AUSTRALIA'S women's rugby sevens team has won the opening 2017-18 world series tournament in Dubai.

After claiming the 2015-16 world series, the Olympic champions failed to win out a tournament title last season.

But Tim Walsh's side was emphatic in the United Arab Emirates, crushing the United States 34-0 in the final.

"To beat a very good Canadian team and to go and blow away the USA in the final was very pleasing and there were some outstanding performances,” Walsh said.

"Everyone banded together and put into practice what we have been working on over the last few months.

"We had a really good lead into the tournament with the Aon Sevens Series, Central Coast Sevens and the games against New Zealand.

"We stuck to our guns about what we wanted to achieve and peaked at the right time.”

The USA dominated possession in the opening minutes, but some excellent work from Emilee Cherry allowed outside back Emma Tonegato to score first.

Sharni Williams then extended Australia's lead midway through the first half, before tournament MVP Evania Pelite (pictured) scored her side's third try just before halftime.

A try to Cherry and a second half double to Dominique du Toit sealed a clinical victory for Australia.

The team scored 168 points and conceded just 38 in six starts in the tournament, an indication of the dominance over the other nations.

Pelite said the win was reward for the team's hard work. "We went away and worked really hard in pre-season so to come out and perform like that is a huge credit to us,” she said.

The women's world series continues in Sydney in January.



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