New Zealand beat South Africa 21-0 in the final of the Wellington Sevens to win its home leg of the International Rugby Board World Series for the seventh time, the first since 2012.

Sherwin Stowers scored two tries and Tim Mikkelson one as New Zealand overwhelmed South Africa in their third-straight final meeting on the world circuit. South Africa had won both of their previous meetings, at Las Vegas and in their home tournament at Port Elizabeth, but New Zealand proved too strong on Saturday in front of 34,000 home fans.

The hosts had opened the tournament with a loss to 12-7 loss to arch-rivals Fiji but scored 178 points without conceding a point in their remaining matches, reaching the final with a 31-0 win over defending champions England.

The win carried New Zealand into first place in the overall standings after five of nine rounds of the world series. They now lead South Africa by two points while Fiji - who beat England 14-7 in the playoff for third and fourth, are in third place.

"What a better place to beat South Africa after five straight losses," New Zealand captain DJ Forbes said.

"We really wanted that. For all the fans who turned out in this weather we thank you. It was a really gutsy performance."

Fiji took third place with a 14-7 win over England in the third-fourth playoff after losing 10-0 to South Africa in the semi-finals.

Source: AP