“Maddison can rewrite the history books, as long as she has a team supporting her role,” Walsh said.

“She is a freak of a talent with the world at her feet but the space creators around her are just as important.

Tia Hinds kicks a clutch conversion against New Zealand.

Tia Hinds kicks a clutch conversion against New Zealand.Credit: X

“Within the team we have specific roles and without each performing their role, Maddi cannot be given the opportunity to perform hers.

“She is a very good person above being an athlete, and is willing to get better every tournament. The sky is the limit for her.”

New Zealand had won the past four tournaments, but they finished 3-3 in matches against Australia this season. The teams also share the event’s two Olympic gold medals and will be the favourites again in Paris.

Australia captain Charlotte Caslick noted the significance of the semi-final victory.

Maddison Levi charges towards the try line against France.

Maddison Levi charges towards the try line against France.Credit: Getty

“Great to get a win over the Kiwis this morning, we have a ding-dong battle with them,” Caslick said. “Just got confidence out of that and belief in ourselves, which is really important moving into the Paris Games.”

France went one better in the men’s series decider, winning their first world title by out-muscling Argentina in the final 19-5 at the same venue, inspired by their star Antoine Dupont.


Australia lost 24-21 to South Africa in the fifth-place play-off on Sunday, but ran out comfortable 21-0 winners over Great Britain to seal seventh spot.

with AP

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