The PRFU CBRE Juniors Tournament kicked off last Saturday, August 24, at Nomads Sports Club in Parañaque City. After a 2-month break, it was fantastic to see the children back on the field playing touch rugby (Under 10 to Under 16 years old) and full-contact rugby (Under 14 and Under 16 years old). This tournament featured the participation of thirteen touch rugby teams and four full-contact rugby teams from various schools, clubs, and foundations. Over 200 players from the PRFU Juniors Development Program came together under the hot sun, vying for the title of best juniors’ team in their age group. This tournament also served as the introduction of the International Rugby Board’s “Get Into Rugby” program.
In the Under 10 division, it was Makati-based CBRE Junior Mavericks team who dominated and swept all oppositions by not allowing points scored against them. Quest SOS Children’s Village team and Nomads Cararoos team came in second and third, consequently.
The Under 12 division saw the best of three battles between the Quest SOS team and the Nomads Cararoos team. End-game experience became the deciding factor as the Quest SOS team won all 3 matches over the newly-formed Nomads Cararoos team. All 3 matches were tight, with the Quest SOS team winning by just 1 or 2 points.
Leighton Tuloy Foundation and Clark Rugby Club (CRC) boys renewed their rivalry in the Under 14 division. Both teams won over their other opponents in the round games. It all came down to the final touch rugby match of the tournament and it was between these two teams. It was a tight match as both teams displayed superb speed and excellent ball skills. Both teams fought hard but when the final whistle was blown, the score was still tied at 1 all. Because of the +2 difference in the For-Against between these two teams, the overall crown for the Under 14 division was awarded this time to the CRC boys.
The Clark Rugby Club boys successfully defended their title in the Under 16 division even with stiff challenge from the Leighton Tuloy Foundation boys and the G4S Child Hope Foundation boys. With 3 wins and 1 draw, CRC boys proved again that they are the best Under 16 team in the tournament. G4S Child Hope came in at close second with 2 wins and 2 losses. Leighton Tuloy Foundation boys performed their traditional Maori Haka in front of all the teams before their final touch game.
In the full-contact 10s matches, the CBRE Junior Mavericks teams Under 14 and Under 16 won by large margins and did not let the CRC boys score against them. Some of these boys just came back from their Asian Youth Games tournament in Nanjing, China last weekend. Most of these boys are also vying for spots in the Junior Volcanoes 15s teams (Under 14 and Under 16) which will play in Hong Kong at the end of the year. Thank you to all the teams who participated and congratulations to all the winning teams.
The next round of the CBRE Juniors Tournament will be played at Eagles Nest field, Southern Plains Subdivision, Silangan Laguna on the morning of September 21 (Saturday).
SOS Children’s Village
SOS Children’s Village
Clark Rugby Club
Clark Rugby Club
Under 14 (Full-contact)
Clark Rugby Club
Under 16 (Full-contact)
Clark Rugby Club
The Philippine Rugby Football Union is proud to announce the players who have been selected to be part of the Philippine Volcanoes team that will compete in the HSBC Asian Sevens Series, Malaysia Sevens.
Alex Norona Aronson
Christian Desacola Enriquez
Chris Alamil Everingham
Chris Baltazar Hitch
Gareth Dela Rosa Holgate
Robert Amalay Jones
Jake Robrigado Letts (C)
Sean Celada Lynch
Harry Dionson Morris
Oliver Abalos Saunders (C)
Ned Plarizan Stephenson
Coach: Matt Cullen
Team Manager: Ricky Kucia
Physiotherapist: Rico Barin
The Malaysia Sevens will be held from August 31 to September 1 at the the Petaling Jaya Stadium in Kuala Lumpur. The HSBC Asian Sevens Series is Asia’s premier regional Rugby Sevens competition which consists of four tournaments that will take place in Malaysia, Thailand, India and Singapore.
Series set for Kick-off in Kuala Lumpur as Malaysia Sevens Draw is Held
[Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, August 26 2013]: The Asian Rugby Football Union (ARFU) today announced the dates for the 2013 HSBC Asian Rugby Sevens Series (HSBC A7S), Asia’s premier regional sevens competition.
The official tournament draw for the Malaysia Sevens, the opening event on this year’s Series, was also held this afternoon in Kuala Lumpur and officiated by Mr Ross Mitchell, Honorary Secretary General of the Asian Rugby Football Union, Dato Wira Amiruddin Embi, President of the Malaysian Rugby Union and Abdul Sani, Head of Marketing Malaysia, of HSBC.
This year’s HSBC A7S continues the worldwide growth trend in sevens ahead of the sport’s debut in the Olympics in 2016. Most notably, the HSBC A7S has grown from the three ranking events of 2012 to four ranking events for 2013. The number of core teams, (those nations competing across every event on the series), has also increased from last year’s ten to 12, heralding a further improvement in the already-high competitive standard.
The core teams on the 2013 Series are defending champions Hong Kong, runners-up Japan, China, Chinese Taipei, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates.
The Series opens this weekend with the Malaysia Sevens, hosted by the Malaysia Rugby Union, and held for the first time in Kuala Lumpur after several successful tournaments in Borneo.
After Kuala Lumpur, Asian sevens action moves to the land of smiles for the Thailand Sevens in mid-September. The Thailand Sevens marks the largest ever HSBC A7S event with 28 teams participating, including 16 men’s teams and 12 women’s teams. The four men’s teams playing alongside the 12 core teams in Thailand are Cambodia, India, Laos and Uzbekistan, with Cambodia and Uzbekistan making their HSBC A7S debuts. The 12 women’s teams in Thailand are participating as part of the two-leg Asian Women’s Sevens Series with the other tournament being held once again in Pune, India.
After Thailand, the Series returns to Mumbai in October for the India Sevens at the legendary Bombay Gymkhana club. Fourteen teams will take part including the 12 core sides, hosts India and Iran.
The Series once again concludes in Singapore with November’s Singapore Sevens - this time granted full ranking status on the Series.
In Singapore, the 12-core teams will be concluding what should be another tight-wire series, (last year’s champions Hong Kong were better by runners-up Japan by only ½ of a point), as they chase more than just Asian bragging rights.
The top finisher on the Series will take comfort that they are leading the stakes for Asia’s sole men’s qualification spot for the 2016 Olympic Games, while the top finishers on this year’s HSBC A7S will again book coveted spots in the world-famous Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens in March 2014.
All of the action kicks off in Kuala Lumpur this weekend with the Malaysia Sevens (August 31-1 September). The official tournament draw was held at today’s press conference.
The top four finishers from last year’s Series, Hong Kong, Japan, Chinese Taipei and China respectively, were seeded into the first row of the four pools with the remaining eight teams banded into two draw groups of four and drawn across the remaining spots.
Hong Kong tops Pool A with runners-up Japan in Pool D, China and Chinese Taipei are ranked as the top seeds in Pool B and Pool C accordingly.
Making matters more interesting in the opening tournament of the 2013 HSBC A7S is that the Malaysia Sevens falls in the same week as the 12th National Games in China, where rugby sevens is making its debut thanks to the sport’s new Olympic status.
As a result, two of the top four seeds, China and Hong Kong, will have the challenge of running two elite sevens squads in a simultaneous period.
The date clash has put extra pressure on Hong Kong’s small player base. Last season, Hong Kong used a core group of players led by Rowan Varty as they won their first-ever HSBC Asian Sevens crown.
“Last year we only used 14 players during the series, but now we will have to split our resources between the National Games and the opening tournament in Malaysia and both are equally important to us,” said Dai Rees, Hong Kong Rugby Football Union’s head of performance and coaching.
All teams know that a good start in Kuala Lumpur will give them much-needed momentum in the four-leg Series.
With the series being expanded to four legs this year, it will give teams a little more breathing space to come back from one bad result but Hong Kong will be hoping that they can still finish in the top-two in Malaysia even though several of their senior players are likely to be on duty at the China National Games.
“Winning a gold medal at the National Games will be important as it is the first time that rugby sevens is being played there – since it is now an Olympic sport – which means the result will carry a lot of weight among the Hong Kong Olympic Committee,” Rees said.
While Japan and Hong Kong are again expected to contest for the top spot, fierce opposition can be expected from South Korea, the Philippines and Sri Lanka, while the Malaysia Sevens can never be counted out on their home grounds at Petaling Jaya.
South Korea will be aiming to make a mark before the Asian Games, which they host in Incheon next year. In recent years the Koreans have failed to fire at sevens and have been a shadow of the sides that used to stun top teams with regularity at the Hong Kong Sevens in the late 90s.
“This series is really important to us as we look ahead to the Incheon Asian Games and good results will boost our preparation for that,” said Korean coach Park Ki Haeng.
The Philippines will hope the hard lessons learned at June’s World Cup Sevens in Moscow will pay dividends. The biggest hurdle facing them, however, is the availability of their leading players who ply their trade in Australia and Japan.
“It’s all about having a quality team for all four tournaments and that is what we are trying to do,” said Philippines coach Matt Cullen. “We are confident that if we put out our best side we can compete for a top-three finish in the series and this is our goal.”
Sri Lanka finished last season on a high on the 15-a-side front when they won the Division One tournament in the HSBC Asian Five Nations and was promoted to the Top Five in 2014.
But their sevens programme was put out of kilter by the sudden departure of their foreign coaches earlier this month leaving the squad rudderless. If they can get their act together, and if Ben Gollings is back again, the islanders can be a threat to any side.
Among the other sides capable of pulling an upset win on their day are Kazakhstan, Malaysia and Chinese-Taipei, the latter finishing a surprise third place in the series last year, earning them an invite to the Hong Kong Sevens for the first time since 2010.
About HSBC and Rugby
HSBC is a long-term investor in Rugby in Asia and around the world. As well as being the title sponsor of the Sevens World Series, Asian 5 Nations and Asian Sevens Series, the bank is co-title sponsor of the Hong Kong Sevens from 2012. HSBC is the Principal Partner of all the Hong Kong rugby teams, and the British & Irish Lions, who played in Hong Kong in 2013 en route to Australia. The bank is also the title sponsor of the Waratahs Super 15 team in Australia, the Penguin International Coaching Academy and the Cobra 10s tournament in Malaysia.
Asian Rugby Football Union (ARFU)
ARFU was founded in 1968 with eight member unions. In the past decade its membership has trebled to 28 full and associate member unions ranging from Kazakhstan in the north to Indonesia in the south and Lebanon in the west to Guam in the east. ARFU covers a territory of over 44 sq million kilometres and more than 3 billion people. ARFU is the sanctioning body for the HSBC Asian 5 Nations, which every four years acts as the qualifying event for the Rugby World Cup, and the HSBC Asian Sevens Series, which was held for the first time in 2011. ARFU also offers organized international competition for women and youth across Asia.
HSBC Asian Rugby Sevens Series 2013 Facts
Organiser: Asian Rugby Football Union
Title Sponsor: HSBC
Endorsing Body: International Rugby Board
Dates & Venue:
Tournament 1: Malaysia Sevens
Saturday August 31 – Sunday September 1, 2013
Petaling Jaya Stadium, Kuala Lumpur
Tournament 2: Thailand Sevens
Saturday September 21 – Sunday September 22, 2013
IPE Chonburi Main Stadium, Bang Saen
Tournament 3: India Sevens
Saturday October 12 – Sunday October 13, 2013
Bombay Gymkhana, Mumbai
Tournament 4: Singapore Sevens
Saturday November 9 – Sunday November 10, 2013
Yio Chu Kang Sports Complex, Singapore
Single Round Robin followed by playoffs
Series points will be awarded based on the final standings at each event.
Final Standings from the 2012 HSBC Asian Rugby Sevens Series
Congratulations to the following players who have been selected to be part of the Junior Volcanoes team for the Asian Youth Games Rugby 7s Tournament. They will compete on August 17 to 19 in Nanjing, China.
Ayala, Miguel Francisco (British School Manila)
Ballesteros, Kingsley (Clark Rugby Club)
Candelaria, Naimar (Clark Rugby Club)
Cayetano, Terry Boy (Clark Rugby Club)
Feleo, Juliann Viktor (Mavericks/University of Santo Tomas)
Holgate, Andrew William (British School Manila)
Madrona, Jonel (Clark Rugby Club) co-captain
Maleval, Greg George (Brent International School Manila)
Narvasa, Racel (Bulacan Rugby Club/Colegio de Calumpit)
Rano, Albert Vincent (British School Manila)
Whyte, Joshua Louis (British School Manila) co-captain
Head Coach: Juan Gideon Josua Engelbrecht
Team Manager: Kaye Llanie Honoras
Physiotherapist: Alyssa Paula Tomas
The team is composed of Filipino heritage boys (ages 16 to 17) who will compete against other Asian nations such as China, Japan, Thailand, Kazakhstan, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Korea, and Hong Kong. All these boys have been playing in the PRFU local leagues.
For more information on the 2nd Asian Youth Games 2013, visit:
The inaugural Philippine Women’s Invitational Rugby Tournament was held last Saturday, August 3, at Southern Plains field Laguna. Three women’s teams played 7s and 10s matches, with the team with the most number of wins at the end of the day declared the overall champion. Manila Mayhem, Cebu Lady Dragons, and the National University of Singapore Rugby Team all came to the venue, prepared to prove they are the best women’s team in the tournament. The boys of Asian Youth Games under 17s national team also served as a guest team for the morning 7s matches, in preparation for their Nanjing, China 7s tournament in 2 weeks.
SEVENS MATCHESMayhem's Nikki Lira proved to be handful for the NUS defence
Sevens matches kicked off at 11 am with a match between the Lady Dragons and the AYG. It was a tough battle as the faster boys used their outstanding speed to breakaway and score tries. The boys proved to be too fast for the ladies. Nevertheless, the girls played all out. Still, the game ended at 50-0 (W-AYG). Second match saw the battle between the visitors from SG and the host team of the tournament, Manila Mayhem. Mayhem used their improved defensive line, which resulted to turnovers from the visitors. This enabled Mayhem to control the possession majority of the match and using their quick passing, they were able to score tries due to overlaps and awesome speed on the wing. Game ended at 29-0 (W- Mayhem).
Cebu's Medea Mercado tackles a bigger Mayhem player
Third match was between the SG girls and the AYG boys. Again, the boys proved to be too fast for the girls as they outran everyone and scored try after try. Final score was 48-0 (W-AYG). Local rivals Manila Mayhem and Cebu Lady Dragons faced off in the fourth match. Mayhem dominated the first half, with a try from the wing and another one just before the half time break. The Lady Dragons regrouped at the break and gained momentum as their forwards broke through the defensive line several times. Back to back tries were awarded for the Lady Dragons as they showed a combination of speed and power plus great support play. Mayhem took advantage of a penalty against the opponent in the last few minutes of the match and scored a much needed try to put enough separation on the scores. Game ended at 19-12 (W-Mayhem).
Cebu's Tonette Gambito scored a breakaway try against SG
The Lady Dragons bounced back from that loss and won their succeeding match. They scored 5 tries, most of them from breakaways and wrap passes, against NUS’ 3 tries. Two of their tries were converted. Final score was 29-10 (W-Lady Dragons). The last match for the morning 7s games was between the undefeated teams AYG and Mayhem. It was a tight first half but injuries to Mayhem’s players proved vital as the boys took advantage of the substitute players’ inexperience and scored a series of unanswered tries that led to the final score, 33-0 (W-AYG).
TENS MATCHESMayhem's Aye Honoras fends off a SG player
The first 10s match of the day was between Manila Mayhem and NUS. The SG girls got the momentum on the first half when one of Mayhem’s core players got injured and had to be replaced. They proved they have more experience in 10s as they took advantage of Mayhem’s disorganized defense and lack of a sweeper. They kicked the ball down field several times, allowing them to gain territory majority of the half. Mayhem was able to regroup and came back more organized with their structure in the second half. They found their rhythm and scored 3 unanswered tries, all from counter attacks from errors of SG. The match ended with a score of 15-0 (W-Mayhem).
The second 10s match of the day was between NUS and the Lady Dragons. The Cebu girls were all over the place as they did not really have a chance to practice 10s as they focused on the 7s games. SG, on the other hand, had incredible teamwork and fast hands that led to 2 breakaways on the wing. The Lady Dragons were still able to score a try in the last few seconds of the game off a beautiful setup play to the wing. Match ended with a close score of 10-7 (W-NUS).Cebu captain Aiumi Ono led the Lady Dragons' attack
The best match of the whole tournament was definitely the classic showdown between the north and south ladies. Both teams were pumped up to play and prove they are the best 10s team in the country. The Lady Dragons were seeking pay back. Mayhem wants validation. Newbies from both teams played like veterans while the veterans used their experience to inspire their newbies. The rain and shine weather did not stop both teams from playing all out. It was a defensive battle as both teams were defending ruck after ruck. Both forwards’ sides worked hard to gain yards. The first half ended with a precarious 5-0 lead for Mayhem from a winger’s try.
Mayhem's Acee San Juan scores the match winning try
The Lady Dragons answered back early in the second half with their own version of a winger’s try. It was a back and forth rat race to the try line as both teams has incredible defence. With seconds winding down, Mayhem patiently controlled possession through crash balls from their forwards. A gap on Cebu’s defensive line was quickly taken advantage by Mayhem. The match winning try for the Manila ladies was from a ruck less than 5 meters from the line. Final score was 10-5 (W-Mayhem).
With that win, Manila Mayhem was awarded the overall champion of the first ever Philippine Women’s Invitational Rugby Tournament. It was a great day of women’s rugby and a huge boost to women’s rugby development here in the country. Most of these girls are vying for spots in the Lady Volcanoes 7s and 15s teams. Thank you to all the teams who participated and congratulations to Manila Mayhem for being the overall the champion of the tournament.
AYG (50) vs Cebu Lady Dragons (0)
Manila Mayhem (29) vs NUS (0)
NUS (0) vs AYG (48)
Cebu Lady Dragons (12) vs Manila Mayhem (19)
NUS (10) vs Cebu Lady Dragons (29)
Manila Mayhem (0) vs AYG (33)
Manila Mayhem (15) vs NUS (0)
NUS (10) vs Cebu Lady Dragons (7)
Cebu Lady Dragons (5) vs Manila Mayhem (10)
All photos on this page by Chris Hettel
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