TOULOUSE, France — David Richard's try with less than 30 seconds remaining lifted Canada to a 19-12 upset win over Argentina on Friday at the HSBC France Sevens.
Argentina came into the tournament in second place overall in the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, having finished on the podium in five of the six previous events including a first-place finish at the HSBC Canada Sevens in Vancouver last time out in April.
The Canadian women also had a good day Friday, defeating Spain 26-12 and Scotland 14-7. They wrap up pool play Saturday against New Zealand (2-0-0) which has yet to concede a point while scoring 74.
The Canadian men, whose roster turned over after an eighth-place finish at the Tokyo Olympics, came to France 12th in the standings after finishing 10th in Vancouver.
Canada was full value for Friday's win, opening the scoring in the second minute with a try by Anton Ngono on a play that started near the Canadian goal-line. After Matias Osadczuk put Argentina ahead 7-5 with a converted try, Jake Thiel touched down for Canada for a 12-7 lead at the break.
Argentina's Tobias Wade tied it up in the 12th minute after a teammate broke two tackles following a Canadian penalty deep in its own end.
Richard secured the Canadian win two minutes late, leaving Gaston Revol in his wake and ignoring an attempted ankle-tap tackle by Luciano Gonzalez.
Brock Webster helped the Canadian cause with a late try-saving tackle. Webster and Cooper Coats added conversions.
The Canadian men (1-1-0) lost 24-5 to No. 8 England (2-0-0) earlier in the day at Stade Ernest-Wallon. They wrap up pool play Saturday against Japan (0-2-0).
Argentina (1-1-0) finished runner-up in Malaga, Spain, and was third in Seville, Spain, and two Dubai events.
The Canadian men need to move up the standings with just two events remaining after France. The bottom two of the 16 men's core teams will be relegated at the end of the season.
The Canadian women stand seventh overall, with Toulouse the last event of their season.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 20, 2022.
The Canadian Press