Bowl Pool left for Eagles
Posted Date : 02 Nov 08
New Sabah Times, Sports
KOTA KINABALU : The Borneo Eagles’ quest for glory lies in the Bowl Pool after finishing bottom in the Group B challenge in the 39th HSBC-COBRA 10s Championship being played at the Petaling Jaya Stadium.
The Borneo representatives found their opponents a little too hot to handle as they concluded the group stages after chalking up a mere two points from one victory. The first day saw NS Wanderers spring a surprise in the group as they emerged as the winners on five points from two wins and a draw.
Penguins International finished second on three points from one win and one draw, while South African Mustangs finished third on two points – level with Borneo Eagles, but they occupy the third spot on better goal difference.
For the record, the top two teams in the four-group competition advance into the Cup Championship Pool (quarter-finals), while the third and fourth placed teams would play for the Bowl Championship Pool. The winners of the Cup Championship Pool will then march into the Cup semi-finals with the losers playing in the Plate semi-finals.
Yesterday, the Borneo Eagles kicked off their challenge on the wrong footing as they were blanked 19-0 by South African Mustangs in their first game. They tried to make a comeback in the second game, but their efforts proved to be not good enough at the end of the day as they were narrowly beaten 5-7 by NS Wanderers.
In their final group game, the wounded Borneo Eagles recovered from their slumber start by defeating Penguins International. However, the convincing 22-14 victory over the 2006 champions proved to be a win too late as they will go into the final day of the tournament playing in the Bowl Pool.
Last year, the Borneo Eagles were ousted in the semi-finals by the reigning champions Canterbury. The New Zealand outfit are on course in their title defence after emerging top in the Group A challenge. They will be accompanied by NNK (Northlink College from South Africa) marching into the Cup Pool quarter-finals.
In the Group C challenge, North Harbour RU from New Zealand top the group, while Hamilton from South Africa are second.
Cobra finished top in the Group D challenge, while Natal Duikers also from South Africa emerged as runners-up.
All matches will be played today with the final matches scheduled to be played from 4.10pm. The winners of the Cup Championship would pocket USD25,000 (about RM88,322) while the runners-up would walk home with USD15,000 (about RM53, 015).
The losing Cup semi-finalists would be rewarded with USD4,000 (about RM14,130) each, while the Plate champions would receive USD2,000 (about RM7,065).