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'Bittersweet' end to Women's Sevens campaign

New Zealand suffered a quarter-final defeat to England, then won the Plate final over France, in completing a series win in the final Women's World Sevens tournament in Amsterdam on Saturday.

Canada won their first final when scoring a late winner to beat Australia 20-17 while England beat the United States in the third and fourth play-off 15-14 to secure the fourth qualifying spot for next year's Olympic Games.

New Zealand finished with 108 points, Canada were second on 96, Australia took third with 94 and England finished on 76 points to claim fourth from the United States who also scored 76 points.

New Zealand coach Sean Horan said: "It was a performance goal of ours along with nailing Olympic qualification, but it's a bit bittersweet with the way we finished in the final fortnight.

"The gap has closed dramatically, the competition is fierce, and great, so it's special to win a third World Series title."

England made the first impact in the quarter-final with Amy Wilson-Hardy scoring the first try. But New Zealand's response was stunning.

Kayla McAlister saw a gap, stepped her way through and then sprinted 50m to score.

However, Natasha Hunt scored for England to go to the half leading 10-7.

Captain Sarah Goss beat four defenders to open the second half scoring to give New Zealand a 14-10 lead but strong running from Emily Scarratt saw her out-pace New Zealand's defence to score.

Try as New Zealand might they couldn't regain the lead and England won 17-14.

New Zealand then faced Russia in the Plate competition.

Gayle Broughton and Shiray Tane ensured New Zealand made a good start with tries, including two to Tane before Russia scored from a tap penalty through Zhaana Matveeva. Leading 17-5 at the break, New Zealand attacked and Katarina Whata-Simpkins scored a hat-trick of tries as New Zealand qualified for the Plate final against France with a 31-5 win.

France scored first through Camille Grassineau but New Zealand came back strongly, firstly through Honey Hireme beating two tacklers to score and then Kayla McAlister crossing.

Portia Woodman showed her power and speed to score her 52nd try of the season while McAlister and Broughton rounded out the scoring for a 35-5 win.