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Hong Kong Names Squad for Round 3 of HSBC Asian Sevens Series in Mumbai

Search ASIA Travel Tips .com Send to Friend ASIA Travel Latest Travel News Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Its win-or-bust for Hong Kong who will travel to Mumbai, India for the third leg of the HSBC Asian Rugby Sevens Series (HSBC A7S) this weekend with their Asian crown on the line.

Two narrow losses to Japan in the Cup finals in the opening two legs in Malaysia and Thailand have put pressure on Jamie Hood and his men who know they will need to win the last two legs if they are to hold on to their title.

It is a must-win in Mumbai if we want to retain our Asian Sevens title, said Dai Rees, Hong Kong Rugby Football Unions head of performance and coaching.

Reaching the final will all but ensure that Hong Kong finish in the top two in Asia and thus qualify for the Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens next year.

But having won the Asian sevens crown for the first time last season, Hong Kong will want to hang on to it and will be spoiling for a fight in Mumbai this weekend.

Hong Kong will be boosted by the return of forwards Kwok Ka-chun and Tomasi Lawa and their experience will be needed if they are to prevent Japan from making it a hat-trick of victories.

Kwok missed the last tournament as he was getting married and the veteran forward will be a huge asset around the park as will the Fijian-born Lawa, who was unfortunate to miss the Thailand Sevens due to a visa problem. But Lawas passage to India has been assured and he will be keen to make an impression in only his second appearance for Hong Kong.

HKRFU Head of Performance and Coaching and National Coach - Dai Rees  

Dai Rees - Click to Enlarge (more pics)


There is a confident mood in the camp. But I think we need a little bit of luck and consistency from all quarters, said Rees. We have been unlucky in two finals being down to six men in Kuala Lumpur and then 12-0 up in Thailand before it slipped away.

We have to minimise our mistakes especially in the finals which are now very intense. We need to put ourselves in the position to win and hopefully it will come out right. But we cant get too far ahead of ourselves, and right now we are just focused on getting to the finals, Rees added.

The majority of the Hong Kong squad played in the opening week of the Paul Y Engineering Premiership last weekend and came through unscathed much to the relief of Rees.

I was pleased to see the guys playing their hearts out for their clubs. It is that kind of effort which gets them selected for Hong Kong as well, Rees said.

Hong Kong is grouped with China and Malaysia in the first day of pool action (Pool D).

We will have to be wary of both teams. China might be a different proposition with the National Games out of the way and could have beefed up their squad while Malaysia are always a dangerous opponent on day one, especially if they have their Fijian boys with them, said Rees.

Japan has drawn Philippines and Taiwan in Pool A, while South Korea is with Kazakhstan and Singapore in Pool B. Sri Lanka, one of the most impressive sides this season, top Pool C along with Thailand and the United Arab Emirates.

Japan head the overall HSBC Asian Sevens Series rankings with a maximum 24 points while Hong Kong is in second place on 22 followed by Sri Lanka and South Korea both with 19.

Hong Kong Squad: Jamie Hood (Captain), Nick Hewson, Kwok Ka Chun, Lee Jones, Raef Morrison, Tomasi Lawa, Rowan Varty, Ben Rimene, Alex McQueen, Max Woodward, Tom McQueen, Yiu, Kam Shing Salom.

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