Sri Lanka embarrassed in Hong Kong with two heavy defeats


Sri Lanka fly half Fazil Marija makes a break against Hong Kong during their 31-5 defeat in Hong Kong yesterday.


Sri Lanka sevens rugby team’s dreams of sealing a place in the next year’s World Seven Series shattered in the space of two hours as they were handed two heavy defeats by Chile and Hong Kong in the opening day of the World Seven Series qualifiers in Hong Kong Stadium in Hong Kong yesterday.

Sri Lanka were dominated 31-5 by Hong Kong in the second match as only the wing three quarter Anurudda Wilwara was able to score the sole try for Sri Lanka.

The hosts took a 17-0 half time lead as fly-half Ben Rimene ran the show with a couple of tries in the fifth and seventh minute after R. Varty had given the home side the lead in the second minute. Hong Kong played even better in the second half dominating the possession.

Mark Woodward extended their lead in the eighth minute with a stunning try after which Sri Lanka threatened a bit but failed to score before Woodward had his second of the game in the 12th minute.

Sri Lanka did get a consolation try through the speedy wing three quarter Anurudda Wilwara who touched down in the last minute of the match. Wilwara is making a comeback to international rugby after being sidelined for two years due to an injury sustained during Olympic Qualifiers in 2015.

Sri Lanka were always going to be underdogs against Chile who are probably the best side in the group. The South American side took an early lead of 12-0 with tries from Marcelo Torrealba and Lucas Westcott.

Westcott later completed his hat-trick in the second half with a couple of tries while Felipe Brangier and Julio Blanc too joined the party with a try each. Torrealba had an outstanding match. He converted four tries in addition to the try he scored. Sri Lanka are expected to face Namibia in the third and final game of their group today.

Papua New Guinea meanwhile, had a fantastic opening day as they defeated a strong Uruguay side 26-21 before dominating Guyana 31-5. Germany also had an impressive start to the tournament as they beat Jamaica 31-12 and Uganda 24-0.

Spain who won the Olympic Qualifying tournament a couple of years ago sent out a strong message to the tournament contenders with two thumping wins over Guyana and Uruguay. They beat Guyana 47-5 before dominating Uruguay 36-0. (JS)

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