With everything to play for on day two, we got all the reaction from pitchside at the Deodoro Stadium.


In the first quarter-final, the tightest of games ended New Zealand's hopes of a medal and coach Gordon Tietjens accepted that the best team won. 

“Obviously we're disappointed to lose that, we were right in it until the end but I'm certainly not looking for excuses, Fiji were the deserved winners.

“It’s unfortunate in sevens, whatever team suffers big injuries, it means the dynamics of the team changes in a massive way."

On the other hand, Fiji's coach Ben Ryan knew his side were lucky to be in the semi-finals on Thursday.

“It was just tough and you know, New Zealand have some wily old guys out there. They took a long time to do everything and I don’t blame them!

“We needed to get an early score, we did that. We had a lot of possession, New Zealand defended well and guys were out on their feet after two minutes of open play. I'm glad to get away with it in the end, but it’s always good to get the result over New Zealand.”

Another day and another higher ranked team beaten by giant-killers Japan. After the whistle, the international media were eager once again to hear from Lomano Lemeki. 

“We just hung in there and at the end of the first half they began to tire and we knew that if we kept on moving the ball … we made a few mistakes but at the end when it mattered most, we scored a try.

“Honestly, I thought we’d come here, win a few games and give it a good go but thought we’d be lucky to make the quarters, let alone the semis.

“I think rugby is starting to get bigger than soccer over there (in Japan) ... which is good because the soccer team aren’t that great!"

Next up are HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series champions Fiji in the semi-final.

“I think the way we’re playing at the moment we’re still in with a big chance. We’re a smaller team than them, but we just need to keep on working hard.

“Regardless, there’s no pressure on us. The pressure is all on the big teams – they’re the ones that are supposed to be bringing home the medals, not us.”

Following the incredible scenes that followed Team GB's extra-time win over Argentina, James Rodwell was delighted with the effort.

"The heart, the effort the boys showed, that was a real tight game by Argentina and I think everyone can see that is why it should be an Olympic sport.

"I think when you win you get a real big boost of energy, but we'll get a good night's sleep tonight and it's a real big day tomorrow for us. We've been playing our hearts out for each other and hopefully the people at home can see that out on the pitch."

South Africa coach Neil Powell was pleased with their second outing against Australia, but is ready for the challenge that lies ahead in the semi-finals.

"I am happy in the way we came back and played. In a knock-out match, anything is possible and Australia is a quality outfit, but we played well. Our forwards got a few crucial turn-overs and we have the backs that can exploit that.

"We need a solid defensive line and a solid defensive effort tomorrow. Great Britain is one of the form teams in the competition and we need go back and plan for another war tomorrow." 

Earlier in the day the pools came to a dramatic climax with the USA missing out on a place in the quarter-finals after a 24-19 loss to Fiji, much to Perry Baker's frustration.

“We had our opportunities with the ball and we just didn’t get it to go our way, we just need to learn how to finish. We just let it slip away when it was right there for us.

“Hats off to Fiji, we know they’re a good team and they fought too and that’s what it’s all about – teams fighting down to the wire and that’s what makes it so exciting. But we still have some work to do.

“We had costly mistakes and it’s been like that with us for a few days now. That will happen but we’ve just had too many of them.” 

New Zealand's Sam Dickson was also pensive after his side's 21-19 defeat to Team GB at the Deodoro which left them third in Pool C and facing a nervous wait to see if they would reach the quarter-finals.

“Credit to GB, they’ve gelled together really well and they put us under the pump early. It’s really disappointing. We had a lot of confidence and faith coming into the Olympics that we were going to do well. I don’t want to make excuses but we’ve had a bumpy year (with injuries) and then we lost two of our biggest strike runners in the first game. But still, we could easily have won that game but we weren’t good enough.

“We may still make the quarters and we’re still good enough to go all the way. We’ve definitely got the skills. but it is tough.We tried to move the ball and they put us under pressure and we couldn’t use our game plan."

South Africa captain Kyle Brown was worried by his side's defeat to Australia in their Pool B match.

“We were pretty poor. It’s more of a mental thing as we have the physical attributes. We’re a very powerful team as it is. There’s another opportunity for us today to go into the knockout round and these are the games that really count.

“Regardless of who we play out there it’s a patch of green grass with some white lines and we are going to give it our best. It’s the Olympics though, it’s always going to be intense.

Spain's Pablo Feijoo knows that his team need more exposure to this level of rugby if they are to compete with the world's top teams.

“I think our boys gave 100 per cent but we know we’re a step behind this level and we need to keep working and learning as this is really the top level. We need to taste more of this kind of rugby.

“We want to compete and we want to win a game here at the Olympics, but we have to take our chances as any mistake is seven points against you. We have to be more focused."