McIntosh expects his charges to deliver
Hong Kong Sevens coach Rodney McIntosh expressed his frustration after his side endured a day of hardship and hard knocks at the Standard Chartered Sevens Singapore yesterday.
Three games, three defeats, no tries. That was the bottom line for Hong Kong as they lost 38-0 to Scotland in their opener, before succumbing by the same scoreline to former sevens world champions England. In their final pool match, they went down 17-0 to Kenya.
'We paid the price for not taking advantage of the opportunities when they presented themselves,' McIntosh said. 'Against Scotland and England we were competitive for about three minutes but then we fell away.
'But against those two quality sides, the results were not unexpected and we had planned to use these games as preparation for the match-up against Kenya, where we had a realistic chance of a win.
'There were a couple of defining moments in the last match, where we were in strong attacking positions only to throw away possession with poor execution. It is very frustrating for the players that they did not manage to get across the try line, but the difference between success and failure at this level can be very slight and the scores did not reflect some good play.'
Hong Kong will play Taiwan today in the bowl quarter-final. 'I am not going to name names, but the guys know themselves where the mistakes were made and I really expect someone to step up to the plate and deliver in this game,' McIntosh said.
Earlier in the day, Hong Kong's women's side went down bravely to powerhouses Kazakhstan in their Asian Women's Sevens Championship cup play-off, the 38-0 scoreline a recurring element of Hong Kong's fortunes yesterday.
Kazakhstan, the defending champions, went on to beat Japan 24-5 in the final. 'I was pleased with our performance,' said Hong Kong women's coach Andrew Tranent. 'We made some completion errors, but I can't fault the players' commitment and they played their hearts out out there.'