Fiji in tough pool

Waisaea Nacuqu on attack against Ireland in the semifinals of the London 7s. Picture: Supplied

The pools and match schedule have been announced for the final round of both the men’s and women’s HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series which will be hotly contested over three days of exciting rugby sevens action in Paris, France on June 8-10. With Australia leading arch rivals New Zealand by just four points in the women’s standings, and Fiji only seven points clear of South Africa at the top of the men’s standings it promises to be a thrilling finale to the series with both titles very much all still to play for.

Play will get underway in Paris on Friday, June 8 as New Zealand take on England in Pool A of the women’s tournament with Ireland and Wales completing the line-up.

Women’s series leaders Australia have been paired with Canada, Fiji and Russia in Pool B, while hosts France will face USA, Japan and Spain in Pool C.

The men’s pool draw sees series leader Fiji in a tough group with third placed New Zealand, Kenya and Samoa in Pool A.

South Africa who are hot on the heels of Fiji have been drawn to play Canada, Russia and Scotland. Pool C sees Ireland fresh from their surprise bronze medal triumph in London take on Australia, Wales and Spain.

In Pool D hosts France are drawn with England, Argentina and USA.

The men’s competition begins on Saturday with Australia taking on Wales in the first game of the day.

At the bottom end of the standings relegation matters will be resolved as one women’s and one men’s team will drop out of the core teams for the 2018-19 series to be replaced by China and Japan respectively following their victories at the qualification event in Hong Kong in April.

Russia currently occupy the relegation spot in the men’s series, while Japan are in danger of dropping out of the women’s series.