Hong Kong China 7s Teams Announced for Cathay/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens 2023
The HKRU has announced the Hong Kong, China Women’s and Men’s sevens teams for their home tournament as the two teams are set to share the stage for the first time in an HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series event when they take to the field from 31 March to 2 April at the Hong Kong Stadium.
Hong Kong Sevens Teams 2023
Hong Kong China Women 7s Team
For the women, experienced co-captains Natasha Olson-Thorne and Melody Li Nim-yan will lead the side into their first-ever HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series tournament.
The HK 7s women’s team consists of several experienced veterans such as Nam Ka-man, Stephanie Chan Chor-ki, Jessica Ho Wai-on, Chloe Chan, Maggie Au Yeung Sin-yi and Agnes Tse Wing-kiu joining the co-captains.
Rising stars Lam Tsz-yan, Micayla Baltazar, Julia Mba Oyana and Allianz Premiership player Rosie Wright are all included as they look to make their debut World Series appearance inside the stadium this weekend, in front of family and friends.
Hong Kong Sports Institute Head Sevens coach Paul John (who was the Head Coach of the men until last year) said “This is the biggest test the girls have ever had. We have a difficult group but we have to embrace that, learn from it, and take the experience of a lifetime out of this weekend. The biggest challenge is to respect, not fear, our opponents.
The top teams in the world are here this week, and we need to learn from that. It is what we play for; it is why we are professional athletes – to test ourselves against the best – and hopefully, the girls will do themselves proud. If they play to the best of their ability they can enjoy it,” added John.
Hong Kong China is in Pool A with Series leaders New Zealand, Canada and Team Great Britain. Their first match against New Zealand is on Friday at 14.16 (local time).
Read more about the pools at the HK Sevens 2023 here.
Hong Kong, China – Women’s 7s Squad – Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens
Natasha OLSON-THORNE (co-capt.); Melody LI Nim-yan (co-capt.); Maggie AU YEUNG Sin-yi; Micayla BALTAZAR; Chloe CHAN; Stephanie CHAN; Jessica HO Wai-On; LAM Tsz-yan; Julia MBA-OYANA; NAM Ka-Man; Agnes TSE Wing-kiu; Rosie WRIGHT.
Hong Kong China Men 7s Team
The HK men’s team will see Salom Yiu Kam-shing make his 70th sevens appearance for Hong Kong, China and his 12th appearance at the Sevens. The squad also includes nine players returning from November’s HK Sevens including captain Max Woodward – who will play his sixth tournament (five times as captain) in 2023.
Alex McQueen will make his ninth HK Sevens appearance, while senior players Russell Webb and Seb Brien make their fourth appearances at the Hong Kong Stadium. Top finisher Max Denmark makes his third Hong Kong Sevens appearance and Alessandro Nardoni, Pierce Mackinlay-West and Mak Kwai-chung will be playing their second home tournaments.
Liam Herbert and Hugo Stiles, both of whom were side-lined by injuries for last November’s tournament, are back in the squad while James Christie and Callum McCullough are making their debut appearance at the Cathay/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens in 2023.
HKRU Men’s Head Coach Jevon Groves said “The squad is rugby ready. It has been a tough selection, and there are some very good players missing out, but over this next month there is more of a view to the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Challenger Series. We want to give guys opportunity so we can have the most competitive squad we can for the Challengers and to push for a place on the circuit.”
He added “Hong Kong and the Singapore Sevens the week after will show where we are at now. Last November, we showed we could compete in parts, and in parts we were below the standard required, so we are looking for that consistency. The Challenger is not an easy thing to win, it will be tough but we have to give guys the opportunity to push for spots.
There will be some real competition over the next weeks, but it is very tough for the guys to be told they are not playing in Hong Kong. But for those guys that have been raised on the Hong Kong Sevens this is a fantastic opportunity for them.”
Hong Kong men are pooled with France, Team Great Britain and Uruguay in Pool B. The men will close out the tournament’s opening day against France at 20:33 (local time) on Friday, 31 March.
Hong Kong, China – Men’s 7s Squad – Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens
Max WOODWARD (Capt.); Seb BRIEN; James CHRISTIE*; Max DENMARK; Liam HERBERT*; Alex McQUEEN; Pierce MACKINLAY-WEST; Callum McCULLOUGH*; MAK Kwai-chung; Alessandro NARDONI; Hugo STILES*; Russell WEBB, Salom YIU Kam-shing.
*Cathay /HSBC Hong Kong Sevens debut
2023 – Key Sevens Competitions for Hong Kong
The Men also head to the Singapore Sevens the following weekend as Groves mentioned, while both teams head to the World Rugby HSBC Sevens Series Challenger Series qualifiers in South Africa at the end of April. Later in the year are also the Asian Games and Asia Rugby Sevens Series 2023.
Coach Paul John also said of the year ahead “Hong Kong is a great way to start our progression to the Asian Games. Every player wants to play in that stadium, but it is just the start of an exciting time for the squad. From Friday until the end of April, there are three huge tournaments for us to play in, which is brilliant.”
Cathay/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens 2023 News
- Complete Guide To 2023 Cathay/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens Events.
- Refereeing Rugby At The Highest Level – Craig Chan & Matt Rodden.
- Tradition HKFC 10s 2023 Teams.
- Hong Kong Sevens Men Set Target For 2023 Tournaments.