Jamie Hood’s decision to take a penalty drop goal in the final against Japan at the India Sevens might be more crucial than initially thought. Asian Rugby Football Union officials said the head-to-head points differential between the arch-rivals will decide the title if Hong Kong manages to win the last leg and thus finish the HSBC Asian Sevens Series level on two tournament wins with Japan. Hong Kong, who returned home yesterday triumphant from Mumbai after defeating Japan 24-14 to win the third leg in India, have been told that their goal in the final leg in Singapore next month is straightforward: win the tournament and they will win the entire series and retain their crown. “We were told by the ARFU that if we are level on points with Japan, then the head-to-head points differential will count. And right now we are ahead of Japan on this count by just one point,” said Hong Kong Rugby Football Union’s head of performance and coaching Dai Rees. Japan and Hong Kong have had their own personal battle at the top of the 12-team tournament, meeting each other in all three Cup finals – Malaysia, Thailand and India. Japan won the first two, but Hong Kong came roaring back to win at the Bombay Gymkhana on Sunday, skipper Hood giving his side a safety cushion by opting to take a drop goal after being awarded a penalty late in the match. That decision now looks wise: it has given Hong Kong a narrow 46-45 aggregate head-to-head points lead over Japan from the three finals. “Assuming we meet each other in the final again in Singapore, our goal is simple, just win. In this case, although the overall [tournament ] points tally will be the same for both of us, we will edge through on the head-to-head point differential,” Rees explained. It was initially thought that Japan and Hong Kong would share the trophy if both teams finished with two tournament wins apiece. “Having this one-point advantage in our favour means we can forget about everything else, and just focus on getting to the final and winning it. That is all we have to do,” Rees said.