Men’s Premiership: Scottish set bar as league leaders; Valley take Kowloon to town
- Scottish beat HKFC in a hard-fought battle on Saturday
- Societe Generale Valley blitz Kowloon for 70 points while Sandy Bay down the Tigers
Hong Kong Football Club lock Fin Field said HK Scottish are atop the league standings for one apparent reason.
“Their set pieces are so strong,” said the 23-year-old lock who is also part of the national squad. “So their backs have such a good base to play off. If they have the ball they’re pretty hard to stop, if they build pressure they can kick to the corners and just over the game it builds up and up.”
Scottish downed the HKFC on home turf 34-21 on Saturday, lead by a stand-out performance from scrum half James Christie. The speedy playmaker scored two tries and frequently broke through the HKFC line, and was named player of the game. He went off in the second half due to a leg injury.
HKFC came out of the gate strong with a score from scrum half Jamie Lauder in the 12th minute, however the lead was nullified quickly as Christie answered five minutes later. From there it was all Scottish as they roared out to a 20-7 lead to end the first half.
In the early game, Societe Generale Valley walked all over Kowloon, beating them 70-12. Valley coach Andrew Kelly said it was their second half that sealed the deal. Valley only led Kowloon 14-5 at the break.
“We started very well at the start of the second half,” said Kelly. “And we maintained that pressure until the end of the game. I thought our bench was fantastic in securing the win so I’m very happy with the result.”
Valley centre Richie Lewis led his squad with a hat-trick of tries after the break, while full back Scotty Davidson went 10 of 11 from the tee as well as adding a first-half try. Valley’s director of rugby Dean Herewini said their loss to Scottish the previous week stung, and they had something to prove.
“It was a huge wake up call for us at many levels. Both as a team in where our collective focus was, and as individuals.”
In the other match of the day, Herbert Freehills HKU Sandy Bay beat the Borelli Walsh USRC Tigers 48-28. Sandy Bay got tries from Jack Metters, Seb Brien, Gus Cameron and Alex Post.
Scottish now sit well atop the league standings with a 7-1 record and 34 points, 10 more than second place Tigers who have 24. The HKFC sit in third now with 23 points, one more than Valley, who improved their record to 4-4.
There is one more round of games for each of the teams before they break for the Christmas season.