Saturday, May 7, 2011

ASIA NATIONS RUGBY: Division 2 Final and Playoff

Thailand hoping history repeats itself in Division II Final

For the first time ever, the HSBC Asian 5 Nations will celebrate a neutral Top 5 match with the clash between Japan and Kazakhstan, (last year’s number 1 and 2 respectively in Asia), serving as an Asian rugby showcase match for the HSBC Division II Finals in Bangkok.

Division II opened with a bang on Wednesday as Chinese Taipei edged Iran in a thriller 34 – 31 and the hosts Thailand raced out of the starting blocks to take home an impressive 37-24 win over second seeds India.

India, who will welcome the late arrival of talented fullback/flyhalf Rohan Sethna, will now face Iran in what promises to be a titanic battle in Bangkok with relegation to Division III at risk. The 3rd/4th place playoff will kick off at 14.00 (Bangkok Time) at Supachalasai Stadium.

Hosts Thailand will hope that history repeats itself after winning the last A5N Division II Tournament held in Thailand in 2008. Thailand will face top seeds Chinese Taipei at 16.00 (Bangkok time) for the honour of promotion to next year’s HSBC A5N Division I competition.

The excitement will be followed by a Thailand Women’s Sevens exhibition match with a team comprised of local celebrities before the showcase of the evening: Japan v Kazakhstan (kick-off at 19.00).

Thanks to Sean Moore, Asia RFU

Thailand v Chinese Taipei in Bangkok (Final)

19[1]  94[1]

Last Five Encounters
05.11.2007 Chinese Taipei 27-16 in Colombo (Asiad Cup)
19.05.2007 Chinese Taipei 22-3 in Bangkok (Asia Nations Div.4)
02.11.1996 Chinese Taipei 53-15 in Tainan (15th Asian Championship)
13.11.1988 Chinese Taipei 32-9 in Hong Kong (11th Asian Championship)
29.11.1986 Thailand 32-12 in Bangkok (10th Asian Championship)

It has been 25 years since Thailand last defeated Chinese Taipei. They are in a fine position to reverse recent trends.

GWC Rugby Rankings
Asia Table-Chinese Taipei 9th, Thailand 10th

IRB Ranking Points
Chinese Taipei 42.58, Thailand 40.84

Prediction: Chinese Taipei by 8

Teams not available

India v Iran in Bangkok (Playoff 3rd-4th)

59[1]  iran-RUGBY-LOGO[1]

Previous Encounter
08.11.2007 Iran 39-7 in Colombo (Asiad Shield)

GWC Rugby Rankings
Asia Table-India 11th, Iran 14th

IRB Ranking points do not apply

Prediction: Very close. Iran by 1 point

Teams not available


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