Number eight Luke Van Der Smit scored a hat trick as Hong Kong China secured their fifth consecutive Asia Rugby Men's Championship title in emphatic style with a 67-7 win over Korea at the Hong Kong Football Club on Saturday.

It was their 12th consecutive win over Korea and a significant improvement on the 30-10 win in last year's competition, in which hooker Alex Post got a hat-trick. It also extended their current winning run to eight matches.

Hong Kong China end the tournament top of the standings with a perfect 15 points following their third bonus-point win of the campaign, having beaten United Arab Emirates 52-5 and Malaysia 70-6 in the opening two rounds.

Van Der Smit had a hand in several tries as well as scoring three himself on an extremely hot day and it was his assist that set up Tom Hill for Hong Kong China's first try. 

He then scored himself before tries from Paul Altier and Harry Sayers pushed the half-time score out to 34-0.

Matteo Avitabile was the first to cross after the restart but he was sent to the sin-bin for obstruction shortly after and Korea were awarded a penalty try.

Normal service resumed, however, despite Hong Kong China being down to 14 men, when captain Joshua Hrstich was driven over.

Two quickfire back-to-back tries for Van Der Smit saw him complete a hat trick a week short of his 30th birthday before Tyler McNutt rounded off the scoring for a jubilant Hong Kong China.

The win means Hong Kong China will remain 24th in the World Rugby Men's Rankings, while Korea are unchanged in 33rd. 

UAE secure second place

In the other match in the Asia Rugby Men's Championship, UAE beat Malaysia 62-19 at the Sevens Stadium to finish in second place in their debut appearance at this level.

UAE had a hat-trick scorer of their own in Sakiusa Naisau as they followed up their shock win over Korea in round two with another impressive display in the searing Dubai heat.

Emosi Vecanua and Tobias Oakeley scored twice, in addition to Naisau's treble, while Chris McKee, Justin Walsh and Riaan Bernard took the try count into double figures, with Justin Gavin converting six of them.

One positive for Malaysia was they scored more tries against UAE than in their six previous matches combined. 

Syarif Nurhidayat Muzhaimey, captain Nasharuddin Ismail and Henry Christian Preston got their names on the scoresheet, with Lee Chapman adding two conversions.

The defeat – their ninth in a row – means Malaysia ends the Asia Rugby Men's Championship 2024 in last place without a win to their name and will be relegated to Division One next year.

UAE continue to march forward with this result taking them up to a new record high of 52nd when the rankings are officially updated on Monday at 12 noon BST (GMT+1). 

Malaysia started the match eight places higher than them in the rankings but they will now drop out of the top 50, falling to 56th.

Joseph hat-trick lifts Trinidad and Tobago

A strong second-half performance saw Trinidad and Tobago secure a 26-3 win against hosts Guyana in the Rugby Americas North Men's Championship.

Nathaniel Cadiz scored the only try of a tight first half, which ended 5-3 to the visitors.

Godfrey Broomes had kicked Guyana into a seventh-minute lead but the Green Machine failed to score thereafter.

Anderson Joseph's second-half hat-trick and a brace of penalties from Christopher Hudson took the game away from Guyana who had beaten the Cranes 24-23 in Port of Spain back in April.

Trinidad and Tobago will climb into the top 50 as a result of the victory, moving up to 29th, while Guyana face a seven-place drop to 59th.

Meanwhile, wins for South Africa and England against Wales and Japan, respectively, will not have any impact on the rankings.