Oceania Sevens - Australia Claim 2008 Oceania Sevens Women's Crown
Australia are the 2008 Oceania Sevens Women's Champions with a thrilling 22-15 victory over New Zealand in the final in Apia this afternoon.
New Zealand opened the final courtesy of a try to Selica Winiata who darted from the back of a scrum under half way and raced away to score under the posts - first blood to New Zealand 5-0.
Australia bounced back a short time later with a strong try to Debby Hodgkinson to level the scores at 5-all.
Hodgkinson was instrumental in Australia's second try, with a bullocking run before off-loading to Ruan Sims to give Australia a 10-5 lead.
New Zealand speedster Victoria Grant was having a whale of a day on Day 2 and she left all in her wake to score New Zealand's second try just before half time to lock the scores at 10-all at the break.
Ruan Sims scored her second try and Australia's third at the beginning of the second half to break the deadlock and return the lead to Australia 15-10. But Victoria Grant struck yet again to level the scores at 15-all after the kiwis camped themselves in the Australian 22 for over 2 minutes.
The match was played at an extreme pace and there were many try saving tackles in this epic battle. Play was moving from one end of the field to the other and the woman from down-under were giving it their all in front of a big crowd at Apia Park, Samoa.
However Nicole Beck was the hero with a brilliant try right on full time to give the Australians a 22-15 victory and the 2008 Oceania Women's Sevens title. Scenes of jubilation broke out with the girls tasting their second victory over arch rivals NZ in a single day. This victory is all important as the Aussie's now get to contest the IRB World Cup of Sevens next year in Dubai, they also fly home with the Oceania title under their belt too.
In the end the Australians deserved the win and based their game on amazing defence and determination from the entire squad, from what they have shown here they will be a force to reckon with now.
Fiji finished in 3rd place, disposing of hosts Samoa 24-7, after the teams were locked 7-all at half time.