RWC Sevens: Day one reaction

(IRB.COM) Friday 28 June 2013  
 RWC Sevens: Day one reaction
USA narrowly beat Georgia on day one of the Rugby World Cup Sevens - Photo: Judy Teasdale

We bring you all the reaction from day one of Rugby World Cup Sevens 2013 at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow.

Russian President Vladimir Putin: “This spectacular, fascinating sport appeared in Russia more than 100 years ago. It is pleasing to note that there is a new page in the history of Rugby and it is coming back into the programme of the Olympic Games. I am sure that holding RWC Sevens will become an excellent boost for Rugby in Russia and attract talented young people to the sport.”

IRB Chairman Bernard Lapasset: "Rugby is breaking new frontiers around the world and Russia has dreamed for many years about welcoming the world’s greatest Rugby Sevens players to this iconic stage.This weekend that dream comes true. This great city and its wonderful people will be the most exceptional hosts of an event that Russians and Rugby fans alike will be proud of and an event that will showcase our wonderful sport and its character-building values ahead of our Olympic Games return in 2016. Our thanks go to the Rugby Union of Russia and the City of Moscow for their vision, dedication and hard work. I would like to wish all the teams the very best. And to everyone here and around the world, enjoy the skills of these magnificent athletes, enjoy the festival."

Paul John, Wales coach: "It is a one-off tournament but the thing is with the pool, every little thing matters because you aren't guaranteed to go through if you finish top two. If a decision goes against you, or miss a conversion, points difference is huge. That is the nature of a 24-team tournament."

Afa Aiono, Samoa captain: "It is pretty hot, similar to the weather back home. We had a slow start, but it was a good effort. We have to set our standard today and continue playing tomorrow which is the real day."

Mike Friday, Kenya coach: "We stuck to task there, the Philippine side made it difficult for us for the first three or four minutes. When we found ourselves we got hold of the ball a little more, looked a little bit more comfortable. First and foremost happy to get the win, everyone got on the park, but we know points difference is all-important here."

Alex Magleby, USA coach: "We had some opportunities to run up some points which will be important for our pool. We got the win and now we get to play against Canada who are a neighbour of ours so that will be a lot of fun. I have never been to Moscow before and to see all the culture here is great."

Ed Jenkins, Australia captain: "Yeah it was a good win but in saying that I am not sure we were where we wanted to be. We kept them to nil though which was pleasing. It is great to have them back at the squad, and they all played their part today but Shannon Walker deserves a mention for that try-saving tackle. I think tomorrow comes down to defence, we can score tries and are not worried about that, so that is where the key is."

DJ Forbes, New Zealand captain:
“To be back here in the World Cup is just an awesome feeling. The pressure of World Cup footy, to tick the box and get a win is the main thing, but in saying that we will be disappointed to let two tries through. We always said the whole shaving of the beard was business day, but as far as the World Cup goes you have got to win them all, so first day here, clean shaven.”

Sir Gordon Tietjens, New Zealand coach: “It’s great to get out with a 19 point win, we made a few errors at the  end which led to a couple of tries, but overall impressive. We started well which is a real key against Canada, by starting well and putting some points on, it put them under pressure and that was the winning of the game, our start.

“For us to start well against Canada, the first game is the most difficult and Canada on their day can beat any team, so I was a bit nervous to be fair not knowing what to expect, different surface, different country and the heat of course, but we put it together which was awesome."