JWRT final day: Play-offs

(IRB.COM) Sunday 3 May 2009
 JWRT final day: Play-offs
Chile's fly half George Laban is tackled by his opposite man, Kenya's Kenny Andola in the play-off for third place

Chile edge hosts Kenya to finish in third place at the 2009 IRB Junior World Rugby Trophy in Nairobi, Kenya but first Korea overpower Cayman Islands 62-12 to finish seventh and Namibia beat PNG in a thriller 48-43 to finish fifth.


Chile finished the 2009 JWRT on a high, holding on against an inspired Kenyan fightback to beat the hosts 19-17 in a fine match at the RFUEA Ground to end the tournamnent in third place.

Kenya did well to keep the South Americans out early on but after 15 minutes Chile controlled well from a nicely worked attacking scrum and scrum half Nicolas Herreros scampered over for the opening score, which he himself converted for a 7-0 lead.

The South Americans went close to adding to their tally through quicksliver wing Mauricio Rey, only to be thwarted by more resolute defence, but Francisco Fernandez ran powerfully from the centre to score a second try for the 2008 runners-up and give them a 14-0 lead shortly before the half.

Kenny Andola slotted a penalty for the Kenyans before the half to make the score at the break 14-3, and give them fresh hope and confidence for the second period.

After the break the Kenyan fans inspired the home team to new heights, and a further fightback. The Africans competed with more purpose in the set pieces and pulled to within four points with an outstanding try when Felix Ayange Otiende's fine run and pass set up a try for centre Joseph Abala Osore. Again Andola slotted the kick and Chile's lead was cut to 14-10.

The crowd was muted when Rey added to his hat trick in the previous game against Romania to put Chile 19-10 ahead, but in a frantic final 10 minutes Kenya's pace and fitness started to tell.

Replacement Anthony Nyandigisi ran at pace through the heart of the Chilean defence and, although tackled, the ball was recycled to produce a try for another replacement Graham Dinda, who cut the deficit to two points.

The home side went in search of the win in front of their home fans but the more experienced Chileans held onto the ball cleverly as the clock ticked down to seal a deserved 19-17 win.



Chile coach Rodrigo Boyé: "We put ourselves under pressure, they were very fast and we should have controlled the match much more. But we are happy, we came to a tournament of this calibre and won three out of four games.

"In the game against Romania we have ourselves to blame for the defeat but we know we could have been there.

"As I told the players, from now on, those who are no longer eligible, it is up to them and their desire to do the hard work to continue representing our country at test level."

Chile captain José Ignacio Larenas: "We fought very hard in a complicated scenario - playing the home side in front of a vociferous crowd, so I am delighted that we managed to win.

"It wasn't easy but when it came down to it, we proved that we are a team of friends ready to fight hard for each other.

"We came to win the JWRT, but we go home happy with third place."

Kenya coach Mitch Otieno: "It's surely a good feeling, good experience for the team. Today we actually dominated in the forwards but unfortunately the heat didn't pay off.

"Its positive and nothing to be down about. The experience we have gained from this tournament will surely help us build up."

Kenya captain Erik Kioko: "The exposure and experience we have gained is a boost to the team and I hope that the tournament has really showcased that 15's rugby in Kenya indeed needs more support.

"We are happy with what we have achieved and we have completed the mission satisfactorily."



Namibia fought from behind to clinch a memorable match 48-43 against the gallant and exciting Papua New Guineans, to finish the IRB Junior World Rugby Trophy in fifth place for the second year running.

Some outstanding attacking running rugby allowed underdogs PNG to build a 24-21 half time lead against the more physical Africans at the RFUEA Grounds in Nairobi, but as the second half wore on Namibia took a firmer grip on the match against 14-man PNG.

Even on the final day of the tournament, the Oceania representatives shunned the modern obsession with kicking, forwards and backs linking seamlessly in counter-attacking from anywhere on the pitch against the more orthodox Namibians, but ultimately that same flair and unstructured approach proved their downfall as Namibia capitalised on the one-man advantage to finish in the ascendency.

The PNG side scored four outstanding attacking tries in the first half to lead 24-21 but a lack of shape in defence also allowed the Namibians time and space in the final third and as they fought back into the match, largely thanks to the leadership and ability of captain Robert Herridge, whose personal duel with outstanding PNG skipper Christopher Kakah was one of the features of the match.

Flanker Desmond Korpok opened the scoring for PNG after just one minute, and they led 12-0 after five minutes thanks to wing Steven Jacob Balasam Junior. In an end-to-end game, Namibia hit back through captain and full back Robert Herridge's try but on 11 minutes PNG pulled further ahead with Bobby Pau's effort.

Andre de Klerk then scored a converted try for the Namibians and PNG came storming back with a try by captain Christopher Kakah before Lezhanne Alcock's effort made the score 24-21 at half time.

With PNG hooker Yahu Possy red-carded for foul play shortly before the half time hooter, Namibia had a one-man advantage for 40 minutes, and set about making it pay. Initially PNG's loose style again paid handsome dividends, Desmond Korpok crossing for a fine score, but as so often in the tournament an immediate lapse in concentration allowed their opposition back in and Russel van Wyk crossed for Namibia.

Ojay Benson Moka restored PNG's lead but, with fatigue starting to take its toll, Herridge and de Klerk scored tries to pull the scores level. Johan Tromp's penalty edged the Africans ahead by three at 41-38 and then Janee Karuaihe's converted try extended the lead to 10 points, before Kakah's late consoltion for PNG brought an end to a breathless encounter.



Namibia coach Johan Diergaardt: "To be able to come back into the game and win showed a lot of character. It was hard to recover after the loss to the USA but the players managed to win against PNG.

"In the end the tournament was fine for us. I go home satisfied. We were only five points away from the final.

"These players grew a lot on this tournament and already one of them, lock André de Klerk, will join the national squad the day after we arrive to go on a two game tour to Argentina."

Papua New Guinea coach Robin Tarere: "I am happy with today's performance. We made silly mistakes that cost us tries. They had a much bigger pack and that is one of the lessons we take home - we must find bigger players.

"This is the standard of rugby we have to aim to play regularly in and we will try to win the Pacific Region to ensure we are back.

"The Junior World Rugby Tropy was an eye opener for all of us and everyone of the players goes home much more experienced. I can imagine a few of them will go on to win caps in the future."


Korea number 8 Cha Sung Kun grabbed the headlines with a record five-try haul as his side ran out 62-12 winners over Cayman Islands in the seventh place play-off at the Impala ground.

Cha scored four of his tries in the first half to equal the record for tries in a single match set by fellow Korean Kim Hyun Soo against Jamaica in the inaugural IRB Junior World Rugby Trophy last year.

The number 8 scored the opening try in the second minute and had his fourth try with only 20 minutes on the clock with his fellow forward, prop Oh Dong Gyun also crossing as Korea established a 27-0 advantage.

Centre Yoo Hee Bum scored Korea's sixth try with flanker Lee Hak Seop adding another just before the final whistle as his side matched the number of tries they had scored in their previous three matches.

The most celebrated try of the first half though was Michael Wilson's for the Cayman Islands, the lively scrum half gathering his own chip over the defence to score under the posts.

The second half was more even with Cayman Islands much improved as they spent prolonged periods in the Korean 22 for the first time in the match, even if they were unable to find a way through the defence.

Hwang Seung Eop and Park Hong Sik increased Korea's half-time advantage of 41-7 with tries before Wilson grabbed his second of the match for Cayman Islands. It was then left to Cha to have the final say with his fifth try.



Korea coach Chang Ryul Choi: "It was a nice experience for the boys, I am happy with today's win and hope that come next year we will perform even better.

Cayman Islands coach Richard Adams: "I'm glad and believe that we have learnt a lot. We really were in a tough pool and I believe come next year we will definitely be a team to watch."

Cayman Islands captain Daniel McGrath:
"I can't say I am disappointed but overall I am pleased with the tournament. We did not win any matches but I believe it drives us on to come next year.

"We have learnt a lot about size and weight and will have to put all that into consideration."