Belfast Telegraph

Home Sport Rugby

Emily Scarratt offers no excuses as Great Britain miss out on rugby sevens medal

Captain Emily Scarratt offered no excuses after Great Britain's women saw their rugby sevens medal hopes end with two demoralising defeats on the final day at Deodoro Stadium.

After winning their first four games over the weekend, Britain suffered a 25-7 semi-final defeat against New Zealand, before losing the bronze medal match 33-10 to Canada.

Australia, meanwhile, marked rugby sevens' Olympic debut - and the first rugby in any Games for 92 years - by taking gold with a 24-17 victory over final opponents New Zealand.

An emotional Scarratt said: "We are massively disappointed. We came to this tournament wanting a medal, and we've come up a little bit short.

"The girls gave it everything, and sometimes it's just not enough. Fair play to Canada, they were the better side, they executed better than we did, and they are rightfully going to have that medal round their necks.

"We are disappointed at the moment, but this (Olympics) has been a phenomenal experience, bringing rugby to the world stage.

"It's been amazing, and if we've inspired a couple of people back home, then we are doing a decent job. We are just sorry we didn't bring home a medal."

And her team-mate Heather Fisher added: "I just feel empty.

"We set out for gold, but lost to New Zealand and then had to focus on bronze and left ourselves too much to do at half-time.

"You don't go on the pitch to lose, you go on the pitch to give your absolute all to win. You hope that when you turn up, you will do what you have worked for your whole life.

"New Zealand were the better team in the first game, but we didn't show up against Canada.

"I don't know what happened. Our basics let us down.

"They say it is not about the destination, it's the journey, and at moments like this you have to try and think about that. A medal just wasn't meant to be."

Scarratt's team, despite having defeated Canada easily in the pool stages, were undone by a rampant first-half performance.

Karen Paquin, Ghislaine Landry, Bianca Farella and Kelly Russell crossed for Canada, with Farella and Russell touching down after Scarratt had been sin-binned.

Danielle Waterman and Jasmine Joyce scored tries for Britain, but it proved a game too far as a Landry touchdown put Canada home and dry.

Britain's loss to New Zealand saw two players sin-binned - Katy McLean and Amy Wilson-Hardy - as the tournament's outstanding player Portia Woodman scored three tries.

Great Britain head coach Simon Middleton echoed Scarratt in admitting there could be no issues over the final tournament outcome.

"We came up against two sides in New Zealand and Canada who were absolutely outstanding over the course of the games," Middleton said.

"We couldn't really live with the pace, and we hurt ourselves with a few of the things that we did.

"There are a lot of young players in there, and hopefully we will get another shot at the Olympics next time around, and we will be better for it.

"The girls regrouped (after New Zealand), but sometimes you just need a little bit more than that. The Canadians are really physical, and they played a really good game. We've no complaints.

"When it comes down to the real tough games like that, you just need a bit more grunt at times, and they had it. We weren't at our best."


From Belfast Telegraph