Japan beats U.S. to finish fourth at Pacific Nations Cup


Asian champion Japan scored five tries to beat the United States 38-20 on the final day of the Pacific Nations Cup rugby tournament on Sunday, finishing fourth in the five-team competition.

Japan, champion in 2011, ended with two wins against two defeats for nine points and the Americans four defeats for one point at the bottom.

Earlier, Fiji won the title for the first time by beating Tonga 34-21 for 16 points. Canada was second on 13 points and Tonga third on 10 points.

The first half saw left winger Yoshikazu Fujita scoring a converted try in the sixth minute for Japan and U.S. full-back Chris Wyles pulling one try back in the 15th minute before converting it himself.

After right-prop Eric Fry and right-center Male Sau traded one unconverted try each, Wyles again put the Americans 15-12 up with a penalty.

But Japan ended the first half strongly when left flanker Hendrik Tui dived between the posts and full-back Ayumu Goromaru added two points for Japan to lead 19-15 at half time.

The second half became a lopsided affair as skipper Toshiaki Hirose opened with another try for Japan near the right corner just two minutes into the second half to give Japan a 24-15 lead.

In the 52nd minute, Japan won a penalty try after a scrum near the U.S. goal line, and then scrum-half Fumiaki Tanaka got out of a crowd to touch down in the 61st minute. Goromaru made it 38-15.

Right winger Luke Hume finally scored a try for the visitors without a conversion in the 67th minute, completing the scoreline.