27 Sep 2021

The Hong Kong Rugby Union men’s sevens team finished their HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series swing in Canada with a seventh place finish at the Edmonton Sevens.

Hong Kong lost to the best team in the tournament, South Africa, in the cup quarter final, (47-0).  There was no sting in the defeat as South Africa clinched the Series championship this weekend, and were clearly the best side in the competition over the past fortnight, collecting a second cup in as many weeks after beating Great Britain in the final 24-12.

The squad were more disappointed after losing to Germany in the 5th-place play-off, 21-7, but bounced back well to beat Series regulars Ireland 21-14 in the 7th place final.  The win was sweet given Ireland pipped Hong Kong in the cup quarter final in Vancouver 12-7 in added time.

Hugo Stiles gave Hong Kong the momentum with a try in the second minute to give Hong Kong a 7-0 lead at the break. Jordan Conroy levelled for Ireland shortly after the restart but Max Woodward turned up another captain’s try to push Hong Kong ahead 14-7. Conroy added a second try to knot the scores again but it was Liam Herbert who claimed the game-winner on full-time to put Hong Kong clear with Russell Webb adding all three conversions. Herbert was named the DHL Impact Player of the tournament after scoring six tries in Edmonton, adding to the four he claimed in Vancouver.

As always when Hong Kong gets a rare invite to participate in World Series events internationally, the emphasis was on growth over wins and losses, and with a squad absent some of its more frequent selections like Salom Yiu Kam-shing, Tom and Alex McQueen and Raef Morrison. 

All travel squad members had time over the weekend with Callum McCullough and Pierce Mackinlay-West earning invaluable experience away.  That preparation will hopefully hold Hong Kong in good stead in the upcoming season with the Asian Rugby Sevens Series, Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens, Rugby World Cup Sevens and a defence of the squad’s Asian Games gold medal all upcoming.

Canada Squad: Max Woodward ©, Michael Coverdale, Sebastian Brien, Callum McCullough, Cado Lee Ka-to, Russell Webb, Hugo Stiles, James Hood, Liam Herbert, Max Denmark, James Christie, Harry Sayers, Pierce Mackinlay-West.