Thursday, April 29, 2010

RUGBY TEST: Hong Kong in the Middle East

Hong Kong v Arabian Gulf in Bahrain (WCQ Asia R2; Asia5Nations)

Venue: Bahrain RFU Club


Both teams showed some impressive form last weekend. Both teams need to win this crucial encounter for different reasons.

Last Weekend in Almaty, The Arabian Gulf held the strong Kazakhstan team until the dying stages of the match. The locals ran away with two quick tries in the last minutes of the game. It was a disappointing experience for the Arabian Gulf team. They must win at home on Friday to have any hope of competiting for the second Asian World Cup position.

Hong Kong must win this match away if it is to have a chance for that second spot. A good win last weekend will be all for naught if they don't win against the least favoured team in this competition. “We must come back with nothing less than a win. The Arabian Gulf will be strong and well organized and will be extremely motivated for their first home match of the HSBC Asian 5 Nations. We have to improve on our Korea performance to ensure a win in Bahrain", said Hong Kong coach Dai Rees. First choice prop Nigel Hobler is the only injury from the game v Korea with Alex Baddely being brought to the bench. No.8 Simon Leung will captain the side again.

2010.04.24 HK v Korea-Simon Leung
Hong Kong Simon Leung was inspirational against Korea. Image thanks to

Previous Encounters
26.04.2008 Hong Kong 20-12 in Al Ain (Asia5Nations)
09.05.2004 Hong Kong 12-5 in Hong Kong (Asia Tournament)
20.04.2002 Arabian Gulf 17-7 in Hong Kong (WCQ Asia R1, Pool B)
26.01.2001 Arabian Gulf 55-22 in Dubai (Friendly)
18.06.2000 Hong Kong 21-20 in Hong Kong (Friendly)

GWC Rugby Rankings
World Table-Hong Kong 26th, Arabian Gulf 28th
Asia Table-Hong Kong 3rd, Arabian Gulf 5th

Prediction: Hong Kong by 14 points



Hong Kong
15. Alex McQueen
14. Salom Yiu Kam Shing
13. Rowan Varty
12. Simon Hempel (vice captain)
11. Tom McQueen
10. Keith Robertson
9. Tim Alexander
8. Simon Leung Ho Yam (captain)
7. Mark Wright
6. Nick Hewson
5. Charles French
4. Nigel Clarke
3. Jack Bennett
2. Jon Abel
1. Peter Spizziri
16. Alex Ng Wai Shing
17. Alex Baddeley
18. Renaud Chavanis
19. Kwok Ka Chun
20. So Hok Ken
21. James Kibble
22. Tsang Hing Hung
Head Coach: Dai Rees


Arabian Gulf:
15. James Love
14. Ross Stapleton
13. Trent Eastgate
12. Taif DeLamie
11. Joshua Sherrin
10. Duncan Murray
9. Jonathon MacDonald
8. David Clark
7. Byron Kraemer
6. Edward LePine – Williams
5. Jason Voyce
4. Michael Cox-Hill (captain)
3. Nicholas Croker
2. Rory Power
1. Michael Riley
16. Daniel Heal
17. Mark Gathercole
18. Steven Little
19. Karl Sutcliffe
20. Sean Hurley
21. Paul Beard
22. Nicholas DiMarco
Head Coach: Bruce Birtwistle

Team lists adapted from

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