KARACHI: Pakistan’s hopes of advancing in the Asian Five-Nation Rugby Championship were dashed yesterday when they were outclassed 34-5 by India in the Div III contest that took place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
India, ranked 77th in the world, enjoyed easy sailing over Pakistan who are placed four spots above their arch-rivals.
Dominating proceedings right from the start, India dictated terms and went into a 22-0 lead at the break.
The Arsalan Zahid-led side came up an improved show in the second session but could manage just five points as India walked away with a comfortable win.
Pakistan manager Rizwan Malik blamed the lack of experience on the international stage as the reason behind the big loss.
“Our team went into the match untested,” Malik told The Express Tribune from Kuala Lumpur.
“Our players have had very little international experience. Taking that fact into account, we are not disappointed with the result. In fact, Pakistan did well against India as compared to the previous fixture between the two sides three years ago. The gap is being narrowed.”
Guam to face India
Meanwhile, in the other group match, Guam defeated Indonesia to confirm the final with India. Pakistan and Indonesia will meet tomorrow in a battle to avoid relegation.
“We need to win Friday’s game badly if we want to stay in the group,” said Malik before adding that both teams have equal chances of winning that match.
“Pakistan and Indonesia have played two matches before with both teams securing a win each. So there won’t be any favourites and we will go all out for the win.”
Published in The Express Tribune, May 31st, 2012.
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