July 2024 Tests: Chile vs Hong Kong – ARN Guide

For the first time ever Chile play host to Hong Kong. Saturday’s match is Los Cóndores homecoming; it falls nine months after Chile’s debut Rugby World Cup tournament. Chile showed a willingness to play attacking rugby despite taking on regular big name opponents in Argentina, England, Japan and Samoa.

The new Rugby World Cup cycle starts for Chile against Hong Kong. It puts together South America 3 and Asia 2. Both teams are contenders for Rugby World Cup 2027. The qualifying process sees direct qualification for Hong Kong while Chile will have a harder route. This very fact has not impressed the South American rugby community; there is a feeling of unfairness with other reasons having been provided with easier pathways.

Chile vs Hong Kong is a match precisely for those interested in Rugby World Cup 2027’s expansion for 20 to 24 teams. It is an early look into two teams who have strong chances of being involved in Australia 2027.

 

  • Pablo Lemoine has named a side without first-choice roster members Iñaki Ayarza, Matías Dittus, Rodrigo Fernández, and Martín Sigren. This contributes to a Selknam focused selection.
  • Fullback Luca Strabucchi will make his test debut for Los Cóndores.
  • In the absence of Martín Sigren, Clemente Saavedra will captain Chile. He earns his 25th cap.
  • In the only prior meeting, Hong Kong defeated Chile 13-06 in 2017 as part of the Nations Cup.
  • Of the 2024 starters, Domingo Saavedra and Santiago Videla faced Hong Kong in 2017.
  • Hong Kong replacements Ben Higgins and Kyle Sullivan started against Chile in 2017.
  • Hong Kong defeated UAE 52-05, Malaysia 70-06 and South Korea 67-07 in June.
  • 11 starting players have been retained from the win vs South Korea: R Cinnamond, Z Cinnamond, C McCullough, J Hrstich, J Sawyer, L van der Smit, PJ Laidler, M Avitabile, H Sayers, T Hill, S Brien.

Chile’s World Cup debut has brought with it new attention placed on Los Cóndores. The pressure is now on Chile to qualify again for Australia 2027. Hong Kong’s tour opener will serve the Asian side as valuable insight into the level required. The prior clash in 2007 is irrelevant; Chile was entirely amateur then. Pablo Lemoine’s men have played against the best at a World Cup and Chile run a High Performance program. The playing conditions are looking very good; partly cloudy weather with mild temperatures. ARN projects Chile to win by 12+ points.

 


CHILE
1 Javier Carrasco , 2 Diego Escobar, 3 Iñaki Gurruchaga, 4 Santiago Pedrero, 5 Javier Eissmann, 6 Clemente Saavedra (capt.), 7 Raimundo Martínez, 8 Alfonso Escobar, 9 Marcelo Torrealba, 10 Tomás Salas, 11 Nicolás Garafulic, 12 Santiago Videla, 13 Domingo Saavedra, 14 Cristóbal Game, 15 Luca Strabucchi

Replacements: tba


HONG KONG
1 Rory Cinamond, 2 Calum Scott, 3 Zac Cinamond, 4 Callum McCullough, 5 Patrick Jenkinson, 6 Joshua Hrstich (capt.), 7 James Sawyer, 8 Luke van der Smit, 9 Pat Joe Laidler, 10 Matteo Avitabile, 11 Harry Sayers, 12 Tom Hill, 13 Nathan de Thierry, 14 Sebastian Brien, 15 Matthew Worley

Replacements: 16 Alexander Post, 17 Ben Higgins, 18 Faizal Solomona Penesa, 19 Kyle Sullivan, 20 Tyler McNutt, 21 Pierce Mackinley-West, 22 Jack Combes, 23 Paul Altier

Date: Saturday, July 06
Venue: Estadio Fiscal (Talca, CL)
Kickoff: 3pm (CL)
Weather Forecast: Partly Cloudy, 14 Celsius. Wind SW 8 km/h
Broadcasts: ESPN; Disney +

Referee: Gonzalo de Achaval (Argentina)
Assistants: Sergio Alvarenga (Paraguay); Francisco Gonzalez (Uruguay)

HEAD-TO-HEAD (1): Hong Kong 1, Chile 0, STREAK Hong Kong +1
2007-11-14 – Hong Kong 13-06 Chile (Hong Kong)

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