Asian 5 Nations
Japan sweep Kazakhstan aside
ESPNscrum Staff
May 7, 2011
Japan flanker Itaru Taniguchi makes a break, Japan v Kazakhstan, National Stadium, Bangkok, Thailand, May 7, 2011
Japan flanker Itaru Taniguchi makes a break during his side's win over Kazakhstan © Asian Five Nations

Japan remain on track for a fourth successive Asian Five Nations title after routing Kazakhstan 61-0 at Bangkok's National Stadium on Saturday night.

The Cherry Blossoms scored nine tries in total, with hooker Takeshi Kizu helping himself to four and Atsushi Tanabe, Koji Taira, Alisi Tupuailai, Goshi Tachikawa and Justin Ives all bagging one apiece.

Japan opened their campaign with a 45-22 victory over Hong Kong last weekend and head coach John Kirwan was buoyed by the fact that his side had produced a more disciplined display against the Kazakhs.

"That was much better than last week though we still left quite a bit out on the field," Kirwan said. "There were far too many errors for my liking but the structures were much better.

"There were times like I felt we were ready to break out. We just need to show some more patience. But at least we zeroed them so that's a positive."

Meanwhile, Hong Kong are on course to finish second in the Asian Five Nations for the first time after hammering Sri Lanka 48-3 in Colombo.

In a game played in desperately humid weather, fly-half Keith Robertson and inside centre Lee Jones both crossed twice for the visitors, with their other three tries coming courtesy of Rowan Varty, Tim Alexander and Pale Tauti.

"This is probably not conditions to play a rugby match in," Hong Kong boss Dai Rees said. "People don't realize what both teams underwent out there. It was draining humidity, and it was unbelievably hot. Both sides suffered big time but all credit to our guys."

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