coverage of the Chartis Cup 2012 was sponsored by the
Hong Kong SkyCity Marriott Hotel. Just 28 minutes from
downtown Hong Kong and conveniently located near the airport,
AsiaWorld-Expo and Hong Kong Disneyland, the 5-star luxury Hong
Kong SkyCity Marriott Hotel is the ideal and affordable choice for
MICE, business and leisure travelers.
[HD video below and
High Res Pics HERE]
A last-gasp penalty from replacement centre Elvis Seveali'i gave
the BGC APBs a hard-fought 22-20 win over English club Saracens in
the Chartis Cup in Hong Kong on Saturday night (9 June).
Samoan international kept his cool and slotted the simple kick
from almost in front of the posts after Saracens were penalised by
Japanese referee Taku Otsuki for being offside as they defended
BGC APBs coach Pat Lam was delighted with his
invitational team’s effort in the star-studded charity match,
which was played in humid conditions in front of a crowd of around 10,000 at Hong Kong Stadium.
“We’ve got guys who have
flown in from all over the world and they are at different stages
of their season or off-season,” he said. “So for them to come
together and put in a performance like that, after just a couple
of training sessions, against a very good Saracens team, was
awesome. It just shows what you can achieve when you have quality
players all over the field.”
Lam said there had been no
debate about kicking the penalty rather than keeping the ball in
play and going for a try. “The game was over, so you might as well
go for goal and take the win,” he said. “We could have kicked a
penalty five minutes before the end but, in the spirit of the
game, we went for the try. But with no time left, you have to go
Saracens captain John Smit was unhappy with the
referee’s decision but accepted the result. “That is what happens
when the game goes to the wire,” said the 2007 World Cup-winning
Springboks captain. “But overall it’s been a fantastic experience coming to Hong Kong.”
Former All Black winger Rico Gear was
the BGC APBs’ most potent weapon, running in two tries and setting
up his team’s first score for 100-cap Wales hero Martyn Williams.
“The heat made it tough out there,” said Gear. “There were
some tired bodies and a few mistakes, but we showed a lot of
pride. We’ve got some top international players in our team and
you always want to put in a good performance.”
took an early 7-0 lead when hooker Jamie George touched down from
a rolling maul, flyhalf Nils Mordt adding the conversion, but the
BGC APBs turned it around with scores from Williams and Gear, both
converted by flyhalf Orene Ai’i.
A superb breakaway try
from Saracens’ Hong Kong-born winger Nathan Earle, converted by Mordt, brought the 2011 Premiership champions level and a penalty
from Mordt ensured they reached half-time 17-14 ahead.
Gear’s second try, early in the second half, gave the BGC APBs a
two-point lead and it stayed that way until six minutes from time
when another Mordt penalty put Saracens 20-19 ahead. It looked
like the English team would claim victory in their first ever
match in Asia but a final push from the BGC APBs resulted in the
penalty award and the winning kick from Seveali’i.
from Gear, the BGC APBs line-up contained three other All Blacks
in Mils Muliaina – 100 caps and a World Cup winner last year –
Jerry Collins and Troy Flavell. Other big names included England
No.8 Nick Easter, Samoa centre Seilala Mapusua and former Japan
captain Takuro Miuchi.
The Saracens team included two
England internationals, scrumhalf Richard Wigglesworth and lock
Hugh Vyvyan, the latter playing his final game after a 16-year
“I’ve played more than 350 professional games, I’m
coming up to 36 and the body can’t take it any more,” said Vyvyan.
“But to play here, in one of the iconic stadiums of world rugby,
is fantastic and I can say to my kids when we’re watching the Hong Kong Sevens in years to come, that I’ve played here.”
Part of the proceeds from the Chartis Cup will go towards the Royal Project
office in Thailand, under the Patronage of Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, to renovate schools hit by
flooding last year.
The Chartis Cup 2013 will take place in Tokyo
before returning to Hong Kong in 2014.