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Rugby Cranes humbled in Hong Kong

By Charles Mutebi

Added 6th April 2019 12:00 AM

Uganda matched the Germans in the first half, with Timothy Kisiga's sixth-minute try cancelling out JB Dawe's early opener

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Rugby Cranes in a huddle before facing Germany. Courtesy Photo

Uganda matched the Germans in the first half, with Timothy Kisiga's sixth-minute try cancelling out JB Dawe's early opener

 

HSBC Hong Kong World Sevens

Germany 19 Uganda 12

Chile 33 Uganda 7

If it is any consolation, the Uganda Sevens lived up to expectations on day one of the men's HSBC Hong Kong World Sevens Qualifier.

Beaten 19-12 by Germany and 33-7 by Chile, Tolbert Onyango's side were left with slim hopes of progressing to the quarterfinals - the official confirmation pending tomorrow's matches that will determine which best two third-place finishers join the top two from each pool in the last eight.

Revenge moment

Uganda takes on the Cook Islands tomorrow and a resounding win over Pool G's worst-ranked side could see Uganda reach the quarters.

But a look at Cook Islands' results against Chile and Germany suggests that task is anything but a foregone conclusion.

Cook Islands lost 31-5 to Chile and 10-7 to Germany - a mirror image of Uganda's performances against the same opponents and clear evidence that it will take something special for Uganda to outclass the Cook Islands in today's high-stakes collision.

Something special is, of course, what Uganda required to get past Germany and Chile and the early signs were very promising.

Uganda matched the Germans in the first half, with Timothy Kisiga's sixth-minute try cancelling out JB Dawe's early opener.

Still, the Germans were up 7-5 with Phillip Wokorach having failed to complete the extras.

The second half was not much different as Germany scored their second try in the ninth minute only for Uganda to pay back a minute later, through Kisiga again, with Wokorach making the conversion this time.

At that point, Germany up 14-12, it was anybody's game and in hindsight, if Uganda had capitalised on their chances in the last four minutes it might have been the beginning of something special.

Tough lessons

But it would be the Germans who would make their victory sure with a last gasp try.

Uganda were clearly still smarting from their painful defeat when they encountered the ruthless Chileans.

The latter took full advantage, jumping out of the blocks to open the floodgates with a first-minute try.

Chile led 14-7 at half time, with Michael Okorach having pulled a try back for Uganda.

But that was as good as it would get for Uganda as Chile continued their onslaught in the second half, adding three more tries.

Uganda could still qualify for the quarters but the idea of qualification to the main draw is one that looks quite out of reach at the moment.

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