A late try saw England beaten 19-12 by Fiji in their fifth-place semi-final at the HSBC Cape Town sevens as they finished joint eighth in South Africa.
England trailed 12-0 at the break but came roaring back immediately after half-time with a try from Tom Bowen while Dan Norton also scored in the corner - his fourth try of the tournament as Tom Mitchell's conversion levelled the score.
However, a late Fiji score in added time sealed victory and ended England's tournament.
Earlier, England, who won Bronze in the series opener in Dubai, were beaten 17-12 by New Zealand in the quarter-finals of the Cup.
Simon Amor's side had progressed through to the quarter-finals courtesy of pool victories over Uganda, Argentina and Scotland on day one.
And they led 7-5 at the break through Ruaridh McConnochie's try and Tom Mitchell's conversion.
McConnochie went over for a second try to give England a 12-5 lead but New Zealand came roaring back with a try soon after.
Mitchell was yellow carded with a minute remaining and that gave New Zealand the man advantage as well as the overlap they needed to go over in the corner and win it late on, also denying England a chance to defend their title."It’s about maintaining that attitude to go out there and keep working hard for each other."
Reflecting on the team’s performance, England Sevens head coach Amor praised his side's effort and attitude.
“It’s disappointing to lose the last play in both games today but once again the effort has been tremendous from the players," said Amor.
“We’ve just made too many errors and our decision making hasn’t been good enough at critical moments.”
Looking ahead to the third leg of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series in Sydney on 26-28 January 2018, Amor added: “We’ve got a couple of guys coming back from injury so that will help bolster the squad.
“We were certainly very rusty coming into these tournaments and you can see that in our performances, so the priority will be trying to work on reducing the number of errors we’ve made which has been high over the past two weekends.
“Most importantly, it’s about maintaining that attitude to go out there and keep working hard for each other.”
England Sevens squad:
Tom Bowen, Phil Burgess, Richard de Carpentier, Will Edwards, Harry Glover, Charlie Hayter, Ollie Lindsay-Hague, Ruaridh McConnochie, Tom Mitchell, Dan Norton, James Rodwell, Ethan Waddleton.
13th man: Will Glover