Fiji won the fourth instalment of the ever-popular HSBC Cape Town Sevens – becoming the fourth different champion in the Mother City – on a weekend which delivered the most tries ever at a packed Cape Town Stadium.
When USA speedster, Carlin Isles, crossed the tryline in injury time of the Cup Final, he scored the 297th five-pointer of the weekend, which was 10 more than in the first year of the HSBC Cape Town Sevens, when the chalk was crossed 287 times.
That equated to 6.6 tries per match, or one try every 127 seconds. Last year’s tally was 271 and in 2016, a total of 282 tries were scored.
The total attendance over the two days at the Cape Town Stadium was 107,905 spectators (51,449 on Saturday and 56,456 on Sunday), slightly lower than 2017’s record crowd of 115,396.
Fiji won the Cup Final by 29-15 over the USA, while the Springbok Sevens team finished third for a second consecutive year after beating New Zealand, 10-5, in the bronze medal match.
“We’re very proud of what the HSBC Cape Town Sevens tournament has become and this weekend proved yet again that South Africans love their rugby and a good time,” said Jurie Roux, CEO of SA Rugby.
“The stats have shown that just over a third of fans come from Cape Town, while close to half are from outside the Western Cape or abroad – which demonstrates the appeal for people to travel to the Mother City for this tournament.
“I would like to congratulate Fiji on winning the title, the Blitzboks on never giving up despite losing a number of key players to injury, but also the other 14 nations that thrilled us with their speed, skills and dedication out on the pitch.”
Apart from red-hot action on the field, the crowd were treated to performances by some of South Africa’s best artists, including Kurt Darren, Emo Adams and Tarryn Lamb, while the beer tents, food vendors and merchandising stalls were serving fans non-stop over the course of the two days.