Mexico defeated Bermuda 75-10 in a one-sided affair at the Universidad Iberio Americana Stadium in Mexico City to maintain their perfect record in the north zone of the Rugby Americas North Championship 2016.
The Rugby Americas North Championshipforms part of the regional qualifying process for Rugby World Cup 2019 and Mexico lead the way in their section after the 11-try victory backed up their 39-3 win against the Bahamas in the first round of fixtures.
Only the Cayman Islands can now stop them from winning the north zone, and to do so the Caymans must first defeat Bermuda on 18 June.
Trinidad and Tobago and Guyana, meanwhile, are in a straight shootout for top spot in the south zone – and a title decider against the northern section winners –after both sides claimed bonus-point wins over Barbados and Jamaica respectively.
HENNING HAS THE MEX-FACTOR
Centre Christian Henning scored a hat-trick in Mexico’s big win over Bermuda while there was a brace of tries apiece for winger Rodrigo Marquez, scrum-half Andres Rodriguez and replacement back-rower Gonzalo Pons. Full-back Agustin Sanchez converted all but one of the 11 tries for a personal haul of 20 points.
Tommy Edwards’ interception try had handed Bermuda a shock 10-7 lead, but Mexico upped the tempo and two tries from Henning and one from Marquez, in addition to Rodriguez’s earlier effort, saw them go into the break well and truly in command at 28-10.
Tries from Pascal Nadaud and a second for Rodriguez within six minutes of the restart saw Mexico put more clear water between themselves and Bermuda. Henning then completed his hat-trick and Pons got his first while Mexico were down to 14 men following the loss of fly-half Miguel Carner to the sin-bin.
Marquez’s second try was soon followed by another sin-binning for Mexico, this time to replacement forward Eric Castello and there was no further scoring until number eight Simon Pierre crashed over shortly after Los Serpientes had been restored to their full complement of players.
Pons rounded off a successful afternoon for Mexico with their 11th try in stoppage time.
ILL-DISCIPLINED CAYMANS PREVAIL
The Cayman Islands overcame the loss of three men to the sin-bin in the second half to register a 20-8 win against the Bahamas.
The Caymans took a commanding 15-0 lead into half-time following tries from winger Vanasio Tokatokavanna and hooker Andre Ormond with the rest of the points coming from the boot of Shaun McDermott. To make matters worse for the visitors prop Joshua Feaster was shown a yellow card a minute before the interval.
Justin Wight made it 20-0 when he scored the Caymans' third try three minutes into the second half but McDermott was again unable to add the extras. Despite being short-handed, Bahamas then scored their first points when first-half replacement Mark Hammerton crossed for a try on 51 minutes.
After Feaster returned to the action, referee Jamie Baum was forced to reach into his pocket four more times in the second half as both sides endured periods when they were down to 13 men. However, neither side was able to take advantage of the extra space on offer and the only other points of an ill-disciplined match came from Brian Baker's 63rd-minute penalty.
GUYANA WIN IN THE WET
Guyana overcame difficult conditions and determined resistance from Jamaica to win 23-5 in front of a capacity crowd at the National Park.
The Jamaicans took the lead early in the opening half in soggy conditions when Steven Miller burst through to score an unconverted try. But Guyana responded with a penalty for Rondel McArthur before Lancelot Adonis scored a fine solo try on the stroke of half-time to put the Green Machine 8-5 up.
Ronald Mayers scored Guyana’s second try two minutes after the restart and Jamaica suffered a further blow when they lost number eight Crisdan Grayson to the sin-bin. Patrick King then went on to grab a try double as the Green Machine asserted their authority on the match to the delight of the partisan home crowd.
Influential centre Agboola Silverthorn grabbed four tries as Trinidad and Tobago made it two wins from two with a 39-5 win against Barbados in Bridgetown.
Silverthorn scored twice in each half and winger James Phillip helped himself to a brace in a match where the Calypso Warriors only managed to convert two of their seven tries.
Trinidad and Tobago remain as the highest Caribbean nation in the World Rugby Rankings in 43rd. Guyana are unchanged too, in 55th, on 45.03 points, fractionally ahead of Mexico, while the Cayman Islands are next best in 61st position. Bermuda drop two places to 68th, Jamaica stay 72nd and a second straight loss sees Barbados fall below India and Nigeria to 78th.
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