Zimbabwe’s Cheetahs beat Kenya 14-5 to win the Shield title during the HSBC Sevens rugby championships held in George, South Africa, over the weekend.
Zimbabwe had lost all their three Pool D matches, going down 26-19 to Portugal in the opener where Gardner Nechironga had two tries and Tangai Nemadire converted three.
In the second match, Zimbabwe were downed 33-7 by South Africa before losing the last pool match 24-12 to Argentina.
The Cheetahs then lost 25-7 to Russia in the semi-finals of the Bowl before pipping the USA 19-17 in the Shield semi-finals to face Kenya in the final, who had thumped southern African team Namibia 41-0.
In the final, Jacques Leitao touched down in the third minute and Nemadire converted.
Kenya had a chance when the second half began with Brian Nyikuli scoring a try but was let down by Gibson Weru Kahuthia who missed the conversion before Nechironga and Nemadire combined to seal victory for the Cheetahs.
New Zealand retained their Emirates Airline South Africa Sevens title, beating England in the tightest of finals with a last-gasp penalty kick, 22-19.
In defending the title they won last year in George, the New Zealanders have closed England’s early lead in the 2010/11 HSBC Sevens World Series to just four points.
England led a pulsating final 14-0 but Gordon Tietjens’ side fought back into the match to lead 19-14. Mat Turner’s late score for England tied up the match and England looked to be in the driving seat with the Kiwis reduced to six men, but Tomasi Cama held his nerve to strike the winning points with a last-second penalty goal.
After the first two events in Dubai and South Africa, England lead the World Series with 44 points from New Zealand (40), Samoa (36) and Fiji (32) with South Africa lying fifth on 24.
South Africa recovered from the disappointment of losing in the Cup quarters to beat Argentina to the Plate. Scotland won the Bowl.