Gai Wu ready to return to top of Hong Kong Women’s Premiership after snapping Valley’s 51-game winning streak
Christy Cheng says the victory gives the team confidence after a host of near misses in recent years
After almost four seasons of near misses, Christy Cheng Ka-chi says the ECO Gai Wu Falcons are ready to ride their drought breaking KPMG Women’s Premiership victory over Societe Generale Valley all the way to the top.
The Falcons stunned their arch-rivals 22-15 on the weekend to bring to an end Valley’s remarkable 51-game winning streak and will look to continue their scintillating form against the Borrelli Walsh USRC Tigers on Saturday.
“We are really happy, we have been really close to them but they have always beaten us in the final so to finally stop their winning streak is really pleasing,” Cheng said, who was playing her first game since dislocating her elbow in the Women’s Rugby World Cup last August. “It was amazing to get a win like that in my first game back from injury.”
The long-running rivalry has seen the teams play off in the past five grand championship deciders, with Valley winning the past three and Gai Wu the two before that.
Valley took last season’s final 15-7 but Cheng is confident Gai Wu are ready to exact some revenge.
“The last few times we have got close to them but lost and we still have that in our heads, but I think the win will definitely give us confidence, especially the younger girls,” said Cheng, who has played in two winning and two losing grand finals. “We have built our depth on the bench, which helps a lot.”
With just two weeks remaining in the regular season, the two teams are also locked in a race for the league championship, with the Falcons leading by one point.
While Gai Wu will look to tame the Tigers this weekend, Valley take on Natixis HKFC in the other match in the top tier, while CWB Phoenix tackle Tai Po and Kowloon take on City Sparkle in the development tier.
The clash between Valley and Bloomberg HK Scottish shapes as the most intriguing of the weekend in the Old Mutual International Men’s Premiership, with Valley looking to rebound from their loss to Tigers on the weekend and Scottish out to string together two consecutive wins for the first time this season.
“It’s a massive test, we have put in some really good performances this season then we turn around the week afterwards and we don’t put in the work that we need to,” Scottish coach Craig Hammond said.
“Valley will be pretty wounded from being beaten by Tigers and we know what is coming at us.”
Elsewhere, Tigers will look to consolidate their spot at the top of the table against Kowloon and HKFC lock horns with Herbert Smith Freehills HKCC.