Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Korea U-20 rugby crashes out

Hong Kong and Chinese Taipei through to Final of Olympus Capital Asian Junior Rugby Championship

Sun Hsin-Chien is hat-trick hero for Chinese Taipei[Hong Kong, 9 September 2009]:

Hong Kong and surprise finalists Chinese Taipei are into the final of the Olympus Capital Asian Junior Rugby Championships. The final will be played at 17.30 on Saturday, 12 September, 2009 at the Hong Kong Football Club.

Hong Kong cruised past Sri Lanka 51-10, while Chinese Taipei and Korea played the match of the tournament before Chinese Taipei came up with the dramatic finish, 34-29. Chinese Taipei (tournament 5th seeds) continued their run on the formbook as they upset defending Asian Junior Rugby champions Korea, top seeds in the tournament.

The upset comes after a less dramatic reversal of fourth seeds Thailand in Chinese Taipei’s opening match. Today’s encounter was evenly paced throughout with Korea entering the sheds up 14-12 at halftime through tries to hooker Lee, Tae Hyun and fullback Yang, Hee Chan.

Yang converted his own conversion while outside centre Yun, Su Woong tallied the other. Chinese Taipei’s opening stanza points came through a try to prop Chuan Wan Hao and reserve flanker Sun Hsin–Chien. Sun’s substition was fortuitous as he scored his first of three of tries five minutes after he entered the field.

In the second half, Korea extended its lead to 22-12 before Chinese Taipei began their bravest fightback of the tournament to date. Again it was super sub Sun Hsin-Chien who started Chinese Taipei on the road to recovery scoring his second try at the 25 minute marker; the conversion by fly half Liu Chung-Hao brought the score to 22-19 Korea.

Shortly thereafter another Chinese Taipei substitute made his mark as substitute lock Chen Yu-Hui’s try put Chinese Taipei ahead 24-22. No. 8 Wang, Yu-Hsian capped Chinese Taipei’s scoring run with a beautiful solo effort as he swerved past a few defenders and crashed through a couple of more to bring his side ahead 29-22.As soon as they had secured the lead, the plucky Taiwanese gave it up again after Korean centre Young Soo Nam replied with a fine run to bring Korea back to 27-29.

Centre Yun Su Woong’s conversion drew the scores level in the 36th minute. Neither side could break the deadlock before half-time triggering a ten-minute period of extra time. The golden point impasse was broken by Sun Hsin-Chien as he completed his hat trick in sensational fashion in the sixth minute to put Chinese Taipei through to the final 34-29.

In today’s second match, Sri Lanka held Hong Kong tight until the second half when the hosts surged ahead to jump to a 51-10. In today’s bowl semi-final, Malaysia found another gear to pass Singapore 46-10.

Malaysian captain flanker Az-Zuhran Zainal’s brace of tries in the second quarter of the first half helped open the floodgates and sent Malaysia through to the Bowl final against Thailand (the losers to Chinese Taipei last Saturday.

Singapore’s second loss eliminated them from the tournament.The Olympus Capital Asian Junior Rugby Championship concludes this Saturday at the Hong Kong Football Club. Match times are 13.30 for the 5th place decider between Thailand and Malaysia, 15.30 for the 3rd place decider between Korea and Sri Lanka and 17.30 for the Hong Kong – Chinese Taipei final.

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