SUFC Involved in Historic 7s Win 

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Australia’s Men’s Sevens side won the blue riband Hong Kong 7s for the first time in 34 years with a 20-17 result over Fiji on Sunday.

Nathan Lawson scored the winning try with just 22 seconds left on the clock to secure the gold medal.

Coached by John Manenti, a former Sydney University Football Club First Grade prop, the Aussies were ecstatic in beating the Olympic and World Champions in the nail-biting finish.

SUFC’s involvement also included Stu Dunbar and Tim Clements in the 7s playing group. Dunbar played an important role in the winning try, scooping up a loose ball from a Maurice Longbottom tackle and passing it on to the speeding Lawson.

But the nail-biting continued while a video decision was called on to check that Lawson was in the field of play as two defenders tried to take him into touch.

The Australians came back from 12-nil down against the five-time defending champions, the same mettle they’d displayed earlier in the tournament. Ireland led them 19-5 in the quarterfinals before they sealed a 26-19 result.

The Aussies then beat France 10-7 in the semi-final, thanks to a Longbottom penalty goal after the full-time siren.

“How good are the Aussies, captain Nick Malouf said of the Aussies’ first Hong Kong win since the amateur era in 1988. “It’s pretty surreal.”

Manenti took up coaching after his playing days at Sydney University, leading Eastwood to a Shute Shield Premiership before taking the helm of the Australian women’s XV side.

He’s now proved his mettle in the 7s fold.