The JML 15s League was in full swing at the Eagle's Nest in Silangan, with teams in the Bowl, Plate and Women’s Divisions all competing for places in the June 9th Finals. The Cup teams had a bye this weekend and the Alabang Eagles will fly to play the Cebu Dragons on Saturday June 2nd before the Philippine National Women’s team play an International game against Singapore.
The Women’s game will be the last lead up game before the Philippine National Women’s team plays in the Asian Women’s 15s Championships that will be held here in Manila from June 13 – 17th. Laos, Singapore and Thailand will all travel to the Philippines to play in the Asian Women’s Tournaments with games at Nomads Sports Club on Thursday June 14th and the Finals and Awards Ceremony at the Eagles Nest on Saturday June 16th.
Carabaos Win on the bell to move to the Plate Finals
The Carabaos came up against the Alabang Ibons at the Eagles' Nest and this game would decide the placings for the Plate Division finals on June 9th. The Ibons were definitely focused on beating the Carabaos after losing 33 – 31 after the final whistle when the Hapons converted a last minute try to snatch victory and the win.
The Ibons started poorly when they dropped the first ball of the game from the kick off. The Caraboas pounced on this opportunity to go straight on the attack in the Ibons territory. The Carabaos kept the ball tight and made several attacking raids at the Ibons line, utilizing their now recognized pick and drive techniques. The Ibons defense was relentless for the first five minutes of the game and they consistently stopped the large Carabaos forwards from scoring at the edge of the ruck. It wasn’t until the ball went wide to Jason Lock who scored in the corner to open the game and put the Carabaos on the front foot early in the game. The Ibons failed to regroup from the restart and found themselves under attack again on their own line. This time it was the Carabaos second rower Bradley Benton who charged over to score their second try in the first 10 minutes and take a 10 – 0 lead.
It wasn’t until the 15th minute of the game that the Ibons secured the ball and kicked for field position and were able to apply some pressure on the Carabaos defense. The Ibons strung together several attacking raids with Rupert Zappia finally scoring from a skillful backline move and converted the try to bring the Ibons back into the game at 10 – 7. The Ibons immediately fell into their own trap as they bundled their second kick off and this let the Carabaos pressure them into making mistakes that eventually led to a penalty that was converted by Daniel Melrose to take the lead to 13 - 7. The Carabaos seemed to drop their intensity and as soon as they did, David Carman sprang into life and made three decisive breaks that allowed the Ibons to score just before halftime through a sneaky dummy half try to Jaypee Paypon who darted from the base of a ruck and scored under the posts. The try was converted and the Ibons went into the halftime break with a narrow 14 – 13 lead.
The second half would prove to be just as even as the first and Rupert Zappia took advantage of some weak Carabaos defense when he scored his second try and the Ibons had the ascendency. All they had to do was play field possession and minimize their mistake rate to take out a victory. It was the Ibons lack of discipline at the ruck area that would lead to the next two penalties being converted by Dan Melrose to bring the game level at 19 – 19. The Ibons were their own worst enemy as they repeatedly gave away penalties for off side at the ruck which eventually led to two Ibons players being sin binned in the last 10 minutes of the game. The Ibons were on their own line and the Caraboas won another penalty and decided to take the scrum and punish the weakened Ibons forwards. The Caraboas pushed the Ibons into their own corner and it was Chris Anderson who dove over at no. 8 to score on the whistle and win the game for the Carabaos by 24 – 19. De ja vu for the Ibons, losing their second straight game at home on the whistle and they can only blame themselves for repeatedly infringing and allowing the Carabaos back into the game.
Maverick Vipers make in two from two wins heading into the Plate Final
The Bowl game saw a range of players take the field starting with the traditional rugby 101 teams which were both bolstered with National Underage Team players from ISM and BSM. The combination of enthusiasm from the 101 players and raw talent from the National underage players proved to be an effective recipe for a competitive game of 15s rugby. The game began at a blistering pace and it was Vipers number 8 Jason Lock who scored the opening try of the game when he beat three defenders to score out wide.
The game was certainly a struggle with both teams intent on winning the forward battle. The National Underage players marked up on each other on both sides with Tim Churchill, Jake Batuhan and Dan Melrose playing for the Bison/Tarsiers and Dan O'Reilly and AJ Brown playing for the Maverick Vipers. AJ Brown set up the challenge when he scored for the Vipers and was supported by last week’s MVP for the Mavericks Vipers, Charles Barthelemy who again showed that he is a player to watch in the future as he scored the Vipers third try to take a 17 – 0 lead into the halftime break.
The Bison Tarsiers were a different team in the second half and actually outscored the Vipers by 5 – 3, with Marc Patiag scoring the Bison’s only try and Dan Melrose kicking the only penalty goal for the game to end Maverick Vipers 20 defeating Bison Tarsiers 5. This means that the Maverick Vipers will again face the Bison-Tarsiers in the Plate Division final on June 9th.
Women’s Teams prepare for upcoming International Series
The Manila based women’s National Team players assembled at the Eagles Nest field to have an early training session and all the players will travel to Cebu this Thursday to prepare for an International 15s game against Singapore. This will be final hit out before the Philippine National Women’s Team host the Asian Women’s 15s tournament here in Manila on June 14 (Nomads) and June 16 (Eagles).
With half the National squad based in Cebu, 17 women turned out to play at Eagles on Saturday and the women played four quarters of 7s rugby. It was National Team player Rose Dela Cruz who stole the show in the first half by scoring two runaway tries. She was well supported by Jen Saldo from UMAK who showed she is definitely a prospect for the future with her deceptive speed as she ran the length of the field to score team Blues third try andtake a convincing halftime lead over the Red team by 17 – 0.
Acee San Juan played strongly at scrumhalf for the Blue team and constantly delivered quality ball to her speedy outside backs and scored a great solo try when she dummied from the base of a ruck and ran through to score under the posts. It was again the speedy youngster Jen Saldo who then scored the last two tries to see the Blue team win by 37 – 5.
The Women’s MVP for Saturday was Acee San Juan who was well supported by Cassie Umali and Manila Santos who will all feature in the upcoming International Series.
Plate MVP – Dan Melrose and Chris Httel
Bowl MVP – Dan O Reily
Women’s MVP – Acee San juan
Upcoming PRFU Events:
June 2, Cebu International School
Women’s International Series: Philippines v Singapore
JML Cup Division: Eagles v Cebu Dragons
ARFU Women's 15s: Teams: Philippines, Laos, Singapore, Thailand
June 14, Nomad Sports Club, Merville Paranaque (eliminations)
June 16, Eagles Nest, Silangan (finals & awards)
JML 15s League Finals and Awards presentation
June 9, Eagles Nest – Cup, Plate, Bowl and Women’s Finals
Philippine National Games
June 23, RECS Stadium, Sta Cruz Laguna
Touch Rugby Finals
The CBRE Juniors summer finals were held at the newly opened Eagles’ Nest situated in Silangan, off the South Luzon Expressway in Laguna. The new field was in excellent condition to host the CBRE Juniors’ finals and up to 220 young Rugby and Touch Rugby players travelled down to do battle. The teams came from various schools, clubs and foundations which are all part of the PRFU Juniors Development Program.
In sunny, hot conditions the Finals saw the u10, 12, 14 and 16 teams compete in the Touch Rugby competition from 8.30am – 11am while the u12, 14 and 16 year olds played three finals of tackle Rugby Union on the Eagles’ full sized pitch.
In the u10 Touch competition, the new team from Bulacan defeated the British School team. Bulacan showed that local club teams have the capacity to play touch rugby and this was a great win for them, as they have only been playing and learning rugby for the last three months.
The newly formed Clark Rugby Club (CRC) won the u12s touch rugby championships beating the Tuloy Foundation in a close game by 3-2. It was exciting to watch the flair and enthusiasm displayed by both the PRFU Foundation teams. A number of these young players displayed skills that could see them represent the Philippines in future underage National teams.
The European International School (EIS) won the u14 age category final and it is great to see new schools and teams entering the CBRE Tournament. This age category had the most teams with Tuloy, Eagles, Hapons, BSM and new club Child Hope all entering teams. The EIS Coach and ex National men’s team Captain Romain Barberis was extremely excited to see the next generation of u14 players competing in this competition.
Finally the Tuloy Foundation defeated CRC by 3 – 1 in the u16s touch rugby final. This was one of the best games of the day with a number of players vying for positions in the National u16 Rugby Team later this year.
CBRE Junior Rugby Union Finals
After the 27 touch rugby games the u12, u14 and u16 players regrouped to play three Rugby Union finals. The u12s game saw the Makati Mavericks take on the European International School in a match that the Mavericks won 20 – 5. The game was played in good spirits and some of the younger players from the Clark Rugby Club also helped out to make up the numbers in this final.
The next final was between EIS and BSM. Traditional enemies France v England in the 6 Nations saw a much closer game as both teams were playing for pride of their homelands. The French School ran out eventual winners by 12 – 5 in what was the closest game of the day. All the players in this age group will be considered for the National u14s team tour to Hong Kong later this year.
The last juniors’ final was the u16s game where a number of last year’s National u14 and u16 players took to the field in the hope of winning the game and ultimately selection in this year’s National u16s team. It was the Makati Mavericks who put in a dominant display over the Clark Rugby Clark winning the game by 38 – 14.
The PRFU wish to thank CBRE Philippines for its continued sponsorship of the Juniors Tournament as well as all the players, parents, schools, clubs and volunteers who made this series a success.
(photos courtesy of CBRE Philippines)
Nomads Storm to the top of the JML 15s league
The Manila Nomads team proved once again that they are the top team in the Philippines at the 15s format with an emphatic 45 – 10 win over their traditional rivals the Eagles. Playing at the Eagles new club in Silangan Laguna, the Nomads ran in seven tries on the back of a dominant forwards display that left the Eagles bemused at beaten. Three Nomads players scored twice, including veteran forward Eric Savina, who was a member of the first Philippine Men’s team back in 2006. Eric showed he still had the legs and vision to run on good angles and constantly took the game to the Eagles defense. He was equally supported by the combined “PLAYERS OF THE GAME” newcomer wingers Bradley Newton and Ram Al Azmeh sharing the coach’s plaudits being named the Hardy’s Men of the Match.
The Nomads never looked in trouble and the Eagles did not do themselves any favors when their elusive strong running center Tim Bheweni was penalized for a high tackle. This led the way for the Nomads to gain some valuable territory into the Eagles half and the Nomads forwards did the rest. The Nomads pack totally dominated the forward battle and time and time again they were able to maul the ball forward taking Eagles defenders with them as they marched forward. This eventually took its toll on the weary Eagles and the Nomads took a 24 – 5 halftime lead. This was done with only 14 men on the field with another ex-National player, John Munro spending 10 minutes in the sin bin for a high tackle on the only first half try to the Eagles by National u18s player Jake Batuhan. The second half saw the Nomads continue to charge at the Eagles defense and with a glut of possession the tiring Eagles could only just hold on to allow Tim Bweheni to score the Eagles only second half try and eventually lose the game by 45 – 10. This now gives the Nomads two wins in as many games. They will face the winner of the Eagles vs Cebu Dragons game (to be played in Cebu on June 2nd)in the JML 15s League finals on Sat June 9th.
Hapons win over the Ibons with an Overtime Conversion
The Manila Hapon’s v Alabang Ibons game was the most exciting game of round three of the JML 15s League. The Ibons looked to have the game wrapped up with a 31 – 19 lead with twenty minutes left in the game. It was the Hapon’s experience showed in the last quarter of the game and they retained possession to score two converted tries in the last 12 minutes of the game. What made the feat even more remarkable was when they scored out wide on the siren to draw the game at 31 – 31. The time was over and the Hapon’s kicker Colin Strikey had a difficult shot to win the game, he struck the ball beautifully and the Ibons could not believe they had lost a game that they led since the first try was scored in the 5th minute.
The Hapons now have one win and one loss. The Plate division final make up will be decided by the game this Saturday between the Ibons and the Carabaos.
Vipers Strike a Blow as they defeat the Globe Immortals
The Vipers who have been training with the Makati Mavericks showed everyone they will be a competitive force in 2012 with a first up win against the Globe Immortals. The Vipers came with numbers to their first game in the JML 15s league and proved to all the Bowl teams that they will push to play in the Finals on June 9th. They now meet the combined Bison/Tarsiers team next Saturday May 26th and a win in this game could see the Immortals miss their first finals.
The Vipers looked well-organized and Man of the Match, Charles Barthelemy scored the Vipers’ opening try in the 4th minute to put the Immortals on the back foot. The Globe team struck back in the 10th minute with an equalizer by Al Tesoro and the game was 5 – 5 at the halftime break. The second half was just as tight as the score remained 12 – 12 with 10 minutes left in the game. The injection of u16 team National team player AJ Brown made the difference late in the game as he broke through some Globe tacklers to score the winning try and kick the conversion to win the game 19 – 12.
The next round of the JML 15s league will take place at the Eagles field next Saturday May 26th:
2pm – Team Xena v Nomads (Women’s)
3pm – Vipers v Bisons/Tarsiers (Bowl)
4pm – Ibons v Carabaos (Plate)
Round 2 of the JML 15s league took place at Nomad Sports Club last Saturday and it was fantastic to see all the local teams out playing the traditional 15s format of Rugby Union. This was the first time that a number of the players had played 15s Rugby and it was obvious that they relished the opportunity to play the more physical style of the game.
In very hot conditions it was the women that kicked off the first game with a number of the players starting to prepare for the upcoming Women's International games:
June 2 - Philippines v Singapore to be played in Cebu
June 13 - 17 - Asian Women's 15s Division 2 Championships against Laos, Singapore and Uzbekistan to be played in Manila
The Women played two games of 7s style rugby and it was Team Xena team that took victory in both games. Several National team players showed that they are ready to fire up for the Philippine team in June, with Rose De La Cruz scoring both tries for Team Xena and Cassie Umali scoring and converting for Nomads in the first match, which left team Xena the winners in a very tight battle by 14 - 10.
The second game saw National team second rower Reena Novero busting the defence open with several block busting runs which paved the way for the Team Xena backline to run in two unanswered tries and eventualy win the second game by 10 - 0.
National team coaches Susan Konstanty and Expo Mejia were very pleased with the quality of Rugby that they witnessed. With the Asian Women's Championships being held in Manila in a months time, they explained that all the women need to be playing top level, competitive Rugby from now until the June 13th tournament to be able to be contenders in these championships.
The next game was the Plate Division match between the Nomads Carabaos and Manila Hapons which saw a number of expats take the field. The game was extremely close in the first half with the Carabaos taking an early lead through a try by veteran player Nigel Barrett. To the Hapons credit, they kept the pressure on the Caraboas which finally paid dividends when they scored just before the halftime break to take a 10 - 7 lead. The Hapons came out in the second half and continued to apply the pressure and it looked they were going to surprise their more fancied opponents when Jun Park scored a great solo try. However, this seemed to spark the Carabaos into the game and the second half became a one-sided affair with the Carabaos scoring the next eight tries, Nigel Barrett led the way with his second try of the game and National U20s player, Daniel Melrose also scored and converted three times for the Carabaos to win the game comfortably by 38 - 12.
The Bowl game, was by all observers the best game of the day with the Globe Immortals taking on the Tarsiers/Bison team. It also saw Cassie Umali referee her first game of 15s Rugby and what a game to make debut. Both teams were certainly fired up for a win and it was Chester Anin from Globe that scored the first try to help Globe begin the first half with a 5 - 0 lead.
The Globe team seemed to have the upper hand in the first half and both teams were playing an open style of rugby trying to outflank each other with their speedy backs. Globe finally realised that 15s Rugby must be dominated in the forwards before running wide and Rafael De Colnet scored the second try for Globe and extended the lead to 10 - 0.
The Tarsier/Bisons under coach Paul Churchill rallied at halftime and came out with a more focused gameplan. They started to control the ball in the forwards, and this new tactic paid off when Bisons flanker Noel Villa scored and game was hung in the balance at 10 -5. This certainly gave the Tarsier/Bisons a new lease of life and they immediately went straight back at the Globe team with some strong runs up the middle of the field from National U16 player Tim Churchill. This time it was the Tarsiers/ Bisons hooker Merick Magdarang who scored on the back of some good ruck work by the Tarsiers/Bison forwards to equalize the game at 10 - 10. Tim Churchill converted the try and the Tarsier/Bisons team took the lead for the first time in the game with two minuted left to play. Globe had one last shot at scoring but lost possession and the Tarsier/Bisons celebrated their first victory of the season with a score of 12 - 10.
The last game of the day was plalyed between the Manila Nomads and a touring side from Hong Kong, the Discovery Bay Pirates. The Nomads had defeated the Cebu Dragons last weekend in the opening round of the JML 15s League by 53 - 0 and were primed to take the game against the newly formed club from Hong Kong.
The Nomads have had an outstanding year so far, winning the Bostik 10s League and the Plate Final at the Manila 10s International Rugby Festival. They have been looking forward to playing the 15s season as most of their big forwards relish the hard physical nature of 15s Rugby. Under new coach, Phil Gittus who himself is a front row player, the Nomads have come up with a very forward-orientated gameplan which worked to perfection on Saturday with Nomads scoring their first three tries through the forwards mauling the ball through the Discovery Bay opposition.
Chris Anderson and Paul Ingram were on the back of two 15m mauls to crash over for tries which was followed by a third try by prop Nick Treweeke. The Nomads never looked threatened as they took a 38 - 0 lead into the halftime break. The Discovery Bay team asked a few of the local players to help in the second half but the Nomads machine was in full throttle as they eventually won the game by 55 - 0. This looks ominus as the Nomads take on their cross town rivals next week, the Alabang Eagles. After two games of 15s this season, the Nomads have scored 108 points and have not reliquished a point against them.
Round 3 will be played next Saturday, May 26th at the new home of the Alabang Eagles, The Eagles Nest. Situated in the Southern Plains development, the Eagles Nest is accessible via the Silangan Exit on the South Luzon Expressway.
The PRFU are proud to announce the squad of 23 players who will participate in the upcoming match against Singapore Development Team in preparation for the Asian Women's 4 Nations Division 2 (AW4N) this coming June 13-17 hosted by the Philippines.
Rosemarie De La Cruz
Marie Antonette Gambito
Kaye Llanie Honoras
Ann Kristine Mae Layumas
Acee San Juan
Blessie Kate De Los Santos
Mae Ann Ubaub
Team is composed of all local players from Manila and Cebu. Come down and watch your homegrown girls in action this June 2 in Cebu International School (CIS) at 4pm.
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