Published: 09:50, April 1, 2023 | Updated: 17:15, April 1, 2023
France victorious on opening day at Hong Kong Rugby Sevens
By Xinhua

France's Jonathan Laugel (top center) jumps for the ball agianst Hong Kong on the first day of the Hong Kong Sevens rugby tournament on March 31, 2023. (PHOTO / AFP)

HONG KONG - Hong Kong, China lost to France 21-14 as the three-day Hong Kong Rugby Sevens kicked off on Friday.

It marks the first time that the Hong Kong Sevens has been played twice on the same series calendar, with 28 teams competing at the Hong Kong Stadium, including 12 sides in women's sevens.

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In the last fixture on Friday, a brace of tries from Jordan Sepho and a try from Jonathan Laugel put France firmly in charge. Despite an exceptional try from Seb Brien, the hosts lacked the quality to turn the game around.

France's Paulin Riva (in blue) unloads the ball during a Hong Kong's player tackle on the first day of the Hong Kong Sevens rugby tournament on March 31, 2023. (PHOTO / AFP)

Earlier, the defending champion Australia got the job done in the first half and eased past Japan 26-5, while another powerhouse Fiji got past Samoa 12-7.

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In the women's series, Hong Kong, China was crushed by New Zealand 50-0, followed by a 22-5 setback to Canada.