Hong Kong still on target for Olympics qualifier despite narrow loss to France
Coach Anna Richards praises her players’ defensive prowess after 5-0 semi-final defeat in Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens
Hong Kong coach Anna Richards is confident her side are moving forward despite their second successive semi-final exit from the Hong Kong Women’s Rugby Sevens.
A gutsy Hong Kong suffered a heartbreaking 5-0 loss to France in the semi-final at HKFC, but a disappointed Richards saw plenty she liked and is looking to June’s Olympic repêchage in Dublin with some confidence.
“One of the things I’ve been very happy with over the past two days is our defence,” Richards said.
“They put it out there and they worked really well and you can’t ask for a lot more than that.”
Not that Richards is getting ahead of herself, and with sides like Spain and Russia to deal with in Dublin she knows her side will have to be at their best to be competitive.
“You look back at us when we won Qingdao last year and we didn’t have an off game,” Richards said.
“We never really had a situation in any of the games where we lost our composure or made bad decisions. That’s what it takes to win a tournament. Almost having two perfect days. We’ve done it once so it’s not impossible.”
A bruised and battered Hong Kong gave their all against France and went close to scoring on a number of occasions in the dying stages.
“It’s more about decision making and fine skills under pressure. It can make a lot of difference.”
Earlier in the day, Hong Kong came from 7-0 down to record a 14-7 win over Japan and book their passage to the semi-finals.
South Africa and France will face off in the final at Hong Kong Stadium later this afternoon.