Aussie men in Olympic sevens heaven

Australia have qualified to contest the inaugural men’s rugby sevens gold medal at next year’s Olympic Games.

The Thunderbolts showed they would be a genuine gold medal contender by sweeping through the Oceania regional qualifying tournament in Auckland on Sunday.

They emphatically grabbed their cherished Rio berth by thrashing Tonga 50-0 in the final – running in 10 tries.

Australia, ranked fifth in the world, had been expected to meet Samoa in the final but Tonga pulled off the upset of the weekend with a 41-5 thumping in their semi-final.

The Islanders were no match for Tim Walsh’s team however as the Australians romped to a 31-0 halftime lead as both captain Ed Jenkins and Pama Fou each scored a double.

The Thunderbolts’ triumph means both Australia’s men’s and women’s sides will play in Rio after the Pearls gained automatic qualification with third place in this year’s world series.

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