The sixteen teams taking part in the GFI Hong
Kong Football Club Tens 2010 comprise of former and future stars
from every corner of the globe who will be travelling to Hong Kong
to celebrate 25 years of the Tens alongside the best that local
rugby can offer. The tournament will take place before the
Hong Kong Sevens on 24 and 25 March 2010.
Defending Cup champions Aliens, runners-up
Alternative New Zealand Legends and Plate champions Penguin
International RFC are all returning for another tilt at the Tens
title in Hong Kong. Samurais International, Scatterlings of
Africa, Borneo Eagles, Australian Country Invitational, Germany’s
Wild Titans and the KIR Club Pyrenees are just a few of the other
Befitting their status as returning champions,
the Aliens are the tournament top seeds and head Pool A where they
will be joined by last year’s debut side and eventual Bowl
winners, Scatterlings of Africa, which will again be led by former
Springbok flanker Bob Skinstad. Australian Country Invitational and mainland
side China Agricultural University, China’s first established
rugby club and a nursery for Team China, round out the pool.
Pool B sees 2009 Cup runners-up Alternative New
Zealand Legends in the top slot alongside the Wild Titans from
Germany, the Hill & Associates Hong Kong Barbarians and British
Forces side Flying Kukris.
Rugby legend Waisale Serevi will be lining up with the Hong Kong Barbarians.
Serevi should be a useful addition to the Barbarians, a team drawn
from players that play locally in the domestic league but who fall
outside of the various eligibility requirements required to
represent Hong Kong.
Speaking about his “new” team from Papua New
Guinea where he is coaching the Men’s Sevens side, Serevi said “I
am excited to try my hand at Tens, especially back in Hong Kong. I
understand that the Baa baas won the Plate in 2008 and I want to
go one better in 2010”.
Pool C is headed by the world-famous Penguin
International RFC under ex-Scotland coach Frank Hadden and Steve
Hill. The Penguins will be out for revenge after reaching the
final in 2007 and 2008 and being the ranked as the tournament’s
top seed in 2009 only to bow out in the Cup quarter final against
Aliens. Last year’s Plate win will not be enough to satisfy this
brood of hungry Penguins.
Another UK-based team features in Pool C,
Samurai International, who have announced that this year they will
be dedicating their performance in memory of their former manager
Colin Hillman, who was also the former Technical Coach for the
Wales Sevens team before passing away last summer. 2009 Shield
Champions Cardiff University and hosts Hong Kong Football Club
complete the Pool.
Pool D is topped by tournament fourth seeds
Borneo Eagles. Also in Pool D is the KIF French Pyrenees team
featuring towering forward Patrick Tabacco who was capped 25 times
for France including at Rugby World Cup 2003. The Irish Vikings
and Old Boys complete Pool D.
The Tens features 16 teams competing for four
honours: the Cup, the Plate, the Bowl and the Shield. On Day 1,
the 16 teams will play a round robin competition within their
pool. The top two teams in each pool advance to the Cup, while the
third and fourth teams in each pool advance to the Bowl. On Day 2,
the losers of the Cup quarterfinals enter the Plate, while the
losers in the Bowl quarterfinals enter the Shield.
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