After an eight hour bus ride, 25 Pandas travelled from Chengdu to Chongqing. When their ETA was set at 11pm, the Black & Whites turned up fashionably late at 3am. After causing havoc and chaos at Maccas at 4am, the Black & Whites tucked in for the night.
There was only one player who played his first game for the Conquerors, the experienced Stu Bunn (NZL) playing at second-five eighth. After the disappointment from last month, the Conquerors were really fired up about this game.
Beautiful sunny day with 25 – 30 odd ºC soaking the pitch at Chongqing Normal University – it was a scorcher of a day.
Led by Stu, the Kiwis did their first haka in CQ stripes, much to the excitement of the crowds and players alike.
After an intense first quarter, CQ set themselves with a scrum feed 5 meters from the CD try-line. Strong running with the ball by No. 8 Tristan sliced through CD’s defense for the first try for the Conquerors.
CQ continued to threaten CD’s try-line time and time again only to come fruitless as simple mistakes were made and CD’s superboot Michael “Blakers” Blakely clearing the ball down field.
Another CQ scrum feed saw Tristan score his double from the back of the scrum. CQ leading CD 10-0 at half-time.
In the second half, CQ were expecting a dog fight from CD and sure enough they were. Intense pressure from CD came in waves and a lapse in defense by Ting saw Norm slice through for a 30m try. Not long after, CQ again threatened the CD line, after some solid runs and effective passing by the CQ inside-backs, saw the ball floated to Sam “The Face” as he brushed off two CD defenders to score.
CD were not out of the game yet. Minutes later, after some good build-up into CD’s half, some rushed play saw a lapse in concentration from CQ and the ball was intercepted by CD’s Norm for him to sprint 50 odd meters for his second try. Score 15-10 to Chongqing.
With only seconds left, a penalty was awarded to CQ. Instead of opting for a scrum, CD stole CQ’s lineout to see the ball cleared down field. Frantic defense won the ball back, but a couple of average kicks for touch saw CD’s winger Jeffery to pick up and score the equalizer and breaking CQ’s hearts. Final score 15-15.
Dinner and boat race was carried out in Golden Hans BBQ. Both teams of 8 topless players (Chengdu in only their underwear) went head-to-head for the row. The pressure was again on CQ as they work to preserve their 100% winning record against CD in Tom "Trans-Siberian Train" absence.
Ref’d by our dear friend Penny from the Airhostee’s Training Center, CQ led the first boat-race - just. CD claimed the second boat-race with some open-throat action, scores locked 1-1.
The third boat-race ended in a draw and while we were waiting for more beer, Charles, the smallest player from CQ, managed to break a table as he persuade himself to stand on top of it.
In the fourth boat-race, CQ was neck-and-neck with CD the whole way through, but the last man from CD downing his beer in record time the difference between the teams and CD takes out the first boat-race win against CQ (probably their first win ever).
Fines were given out accordingly at Nuts Club. CQ’s MVP goes to Tristan and CD’s MVP goes to Norm – both for scoring 2 awesome tries.
All in all, it was a great weekend and we will like to thanks to all our supporters from Chongqing and Chengdu; including Amber, Hanna and Dandan, Penny and her air hostess girls, Denis Lejeune for awesome photographs, Annelies and her girls, Fran, Nzizza, Jack and co (There are simply too many to name individually!!), the Chengdu Black & Whites, Golden Hans, Nut Club, the bus driver for the 8 hour bus ride and our sponsors CQ Scene, Maxxelli Real Estate and Alliance Francaise for making this match possible!
Look forward to seeing Chengdu again real soon!