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Wasps, Exeter Chiefs, Harlequins and Newcastle Falcons top Premiership Rugby 7s pools

Wasps, Exeter Chiefs, Harlequins and Newcastle Falcons top Premiership Rugby 7s pools

Defending champions Wasps, Exeter Chiefs, Harlequins and Newcastle Falcons topped their respective pools on day one of the Premiership Rugby 7s to storm into the quarter-finals at Franklin’s Gardens.

Joining them are Sale Sharks, Northampton Saints, Bath Rugby and Saracens as their title ambitions are still within touching distance, advancing to the Cup knockout stages with solitary successes.

Meanwhile, Leicester Tigers, Bristol Bears, Worcester Warriors and Gloucester Rugby are left to contend the Plate.

Last year’s runners-up Newcastle Falcons, who are in search of a second Premiership Rugby 7s title, progressed with hard-fought victories over Saracens and Leicester Tigers.

In an opener which ebbed and flowed until the penultimate seconds, Falcons’ Zach Kibirige made the difference with an impressive double to earn a 26-17 win over Saracens.

And despite going behind when Jonah Holmes put Leicester 14-7 ahead, Falcons winger Adam Radwan rallied the troops to deliver a 21-14 fightback against the Tigers.

Saracens also advanced into the Cup quarter-finals after prevailing in the group decider against Leicester Tigers with Ratu Naulago scoring a destructive hat-trick to win 26-14.

Elsewhere, Harlequins topped Pool D with two successive victories after beating Bristol Bears 41-12 and nudging a last-second win over Sale Sharks.

England U20 international Calum Waters starred for the Quins – scoring a hat-trick in both games to top the individual points scorers chart.

Sale also advanced after opening the day’s proceedings with a dominant 26-12 victory over Bristol Bears with captain Paolo Odogwu powering to a hat-trick.

Northampton Saints’ hopes of topping Pool A were dashed by Wasps after the two-time defending Champions clinched a towering 35-5 win.

Wasps condemned the unfortunate Gloucester Rugby to bottom of the group with a high-scoring 33-7 triumph thanks to a quickfire hat-trick from Callum Sirker.

But Saints will still be confident of causing an upset after advancing with a 22-20 comeback victory over two-time champions Gloucester despite a 15-points deficit with minutes to play.

Tom Emery’s solitary conversion proved to be crucial as the Northampton academy product sealed victory as the clock ticked down with a charging dive over the whitewash.

Exeter Chiefs are also on the path to Premiership Rugby 7s glory after cruising to a knockout stage berth with successive victories over Bath Rugby and Worcester Warriors.

The Chiefs downed Worcester with a 28-14 victory with the help of a lung busting 60-yard dash from Argentinian international Santiago Cordero.

The 7s veteran again impressed by leading the Chiefs to a confident 31-15 win over Bath Rugby – who began their campaign with a 29-12 victory over Worcester Warriors as former England captain Phil de Glanville’s son, Tom, went under the posts.

All this means that the Plate semi-finals will see Gloucester Rugby take on Bristol Bears, while Leicester Tigers and Worcester Warriors do battle.

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