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Sun blazes down on The Haberden for 10th annual rugby sevens competition

WINNERS: Saracens collect their trophy after winning the Greene King IPA Sevens tournament at Bury St Edmunds. Picture: Shawn Pearce
WINNERS: Saracens collect their trophy after winning the Greene King IPA Sevens tournament at Bury St Edmunds. Picture: Shawn Pearce

Invitational side Saracens won this year's Greene King IPA International Rugby Sevens competition at The Haberden in blazing conditions.

Bury St Edmunds Rugby Club held its 10th annual rugby sevens tournament yesterday - the first of the Super Sevens Series tournaments - with great competition on show throughout the day, watched by a healthy crowd.

Terry Sands, performance director at the club, said they estimated as many as 4,000 people attended - although with no attendance figures taken, this is not official.

And they were joined by Premiership Giants Saracens, Samurai Barracudas, Jamaica Crocs, Army 7s and national development sides.

The event is the first of the Super Sevens Series Tournaments, four national tournaments which run throughout the summer in the UK and is seen as a practice tournament for many top players ahead of the World Cup in San Francisco later this summer.

And it was the Saracens side that triumphed, beating Samurai Barracudas by a 40-0 scoreline in the final, to claim the honours.

They had come through a tough semi-final against reigning champions Army Reds (narrowly winning 29-24) to take on Samurai Barracudas, last year's series champions, in the final.

However, as Saracens are not part of the Super Sevens Series, it was Samurai Barracudas who took full points towards the 2018 tournament, with Samurai's Robbie Smith named Player of the Tournament.

Meanwhile in the Open competition, Bury Barbarians - the home venue's entry - were runners-up to Samurai Academy, losing 21-14 in the final.

The home side's achievement was in making the final, however, as they were outclassed by a specialist Sevens side.

The score did not reflect the one-sided nature of the game, which showed Samurai to be the superior of the teams on the field.

Sands said there were four players on the Bury team who were also trialling for the National League 2 South side for next season, with the competition a 'perfect opportunity to have a look at them'.

With two of them from local sides, he said he was unwilling to reveal who they were or if the Wolfpack would be taking them on, until their clubs had been informed.

Titan 7s won the Open Plate final, beating Apache Braves by 47-0, while Oxfam Crusaders beat Scimitar Storm by 19-15 in the Elite Plate final.

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