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England Sevens cruise through Hong Kong opener

25 March 2011

  • Hat trick for Greg Barden as Pool B opens with nine-try victory
  • England rack up biggest win so far in HSBC Sevens World Series

England Sevens 59 China Sevens 5

Greg Barden scored a hat trick of tries on day one

Photo: Getty Images

England cruised through the opening game against China at the Cathay Pacific Credit Suisse Hong Kong Sevens to post their highest score of the season.

The HSBC Sevens World Series leaders beat the Pool B minnows 59-5 in front of a delighted ex-pat crowd at Hong Kong Stadium on the tournament's opening evening.

They go on to face Japan and the USA tomorrow with the final stages in the fifth of the eight tournament series taking place on Sunday.

Head coach Ben Ryan had asked for his side to be 'clinical and professional' in the opening rounds and that is exactly what he got against a China side who claimed a solitary consolation score through Wang Chongyi.

In all England scored nine tries, with a hat trick for Royal Navy forward Greg Barden on his first appearance at the tournament.

The other tries were scored by Mathew Turner and Dan Norton (Bristol Rugby), who both touched down twice, Dan Caprice and captain Ben Gollings.

Sevens legend Gollings, who scored within 25 seconds of the kick-off, added seven conversions for a 19-point haul.

Nearly all the tournament's big guns breezed through their opening games, Australia 42-0 winners over Zimbabwe, Fiji beating Malaysia 59-0 and Samoa and New Zealand hammering Mexico 64-0 and Korea 61-0 respectively.

South Africa were briefly tested before pulling away to beat Spain 33-5 and the day’s only real surprise came in Pool F where Canada beat Argentina 22-21.

You can watch England Sevens in action and join the beach party on May 21 and 22 at Twickenham Stadium in the Emirates Airline London Sevens, the penultimate leg of the HSBC Sevens World Series. Tickets are available from £15 via RFU.com.