Sleeping giants China provided fans with a new dimension to the word 'improvement' by signalling their arrival in the big time. The mainland are looking the part as they seek their first trophy in the tournament. Yesterday's 40-5 thrashing of Malaysia came hot on the heels of their excellent display against Argentina where they restricted the Pumas to a 17-point winning margin. Last year, they were beaten 59-7 by Ireland in the Bowl final but, this time, they are in the Plate championship after becoming the fourth-best third-place team. China will play Wales, runners-up in Pool A, in the Plate quarter-finals this morning. And if any indication is needed that China will be a force in the near future, one doesn't have to look further than their match against World Cup semi-finalists Argentina to see how far they have progressed. The Pumas won 24-7 but it was hardly convincing stuff as the South Americans were made to work overtime for their win. Cheered on by the vast majority of the crowd, the mainland went into the match determined not to provide cannon folder against one of the more established powers - and they succeeded, showing how much they have learned about the game since taking it up in recent years. Against Malaysia, China were a class apart as they tore open their opponents' defence to record their biggest win in the Hong Kong Sevens. But China national coach George Simpkin refused to get carried away. 'China need more games,' insisted Simpkin. 'But they are getting more composed with the ball and I have been impressed by them.' Matias Albina scored two tries for Argentina, while Santiago Gomez Cora and Gonzalo Romero Acuna chipped in with one apiece as the team, who beat South Africa on their way to the World Cup semi-finals on home territory in January, struggled past a mainland defence that was a good deal more composed than in their 50-7 thrashing by Canada on Friday. Forward Zhang Yang scored China's lone try, but it was the manner in which they executed the attack that surprised Argentina. A sweet-flowing move starting from Xu Hui saw the ball fed to skipper Zhang Zhiqiang and the former player from Hong Kong First Division side Aberdeen spotted the onrushing Zhang Yang to run through to score in the centre. Zhang Zhiqiang converted to make it 12-7 in favour of the Argentines, but the South Americans put the result beyond doubt with tries from Cora and Albina. Argentina were later beaten 26-10 by Pool E winners Canada. Simpkin added: 'When China were down 17-5 we had a chance to make it 17-14 when we had a three-on-one situation, but the player took another option instead of passing it to his left. Argentina are small and they are side steppers. If they miss the first grab of the ball, they cover the ball and make tackles. When we played Canada, the Canadians were taking the straight route and getting an extra four metres on us. If we played them again, I am sure we would reduce the margin.' Against Malaysia, Zhang Zjiqiang ran in three tries, while Xu Hui, Wu Zhenling and Zhao Peng scored one each to make it a day to remember for the mainland. Malaysia's lone try came from Rosli Omar but China's all-round display proved too much for the Malaysians, who lost all three of their opening matches. They went down 56-0 to Canada earlier in the day. China's rout was completed after Zhang Zhiqiang scored an audacious try when he kicked the ball forward, caught the ball off the bounce and sprinted away for his fourth try of the tournament. Zhang Zhiqiang, who played for Sunny Bank in Brisbane for four months last year, said: 'We don't play so nervously against the Asian teams. We have a lot of new members and they need a lot of experience to play at this level. Against the top European sides, we are more nervous. 'I'm a veteran of the team even though I graduated from Agricultural University [in Beijing] only four years ago and I work there as a physical education instructor. That's the only reason why I am still with the team. The problem with our team is once members graduate from university, they don't play for us anymore.' He added: 'Our target was to enter the Plate championship. I am sure glad we did.'