Laguna, Philippines: The Transcom Rugby Championship will stay in the Philippines for the second year in a row after the Philippine Volcanoes - Philippine Residents XV defeated Singapore last Saturday at Southern Plains, Laguna.
In wet conditions the visitors started strongly with two penalty conversions racing to a 6 point lead through Charlie Lambert. Philippine Volcano Tim Bweheni stood out for the Philippines scoring all 10 points in the first half through a penalty, a try of his own and a conversion to make it 10 points to 9 after 40 minutes.
The Philippine backline was well directed by Joe Palabay Dawson and veteran Gareth Dela Rosa Holgate, the Philippines showing flair at times in the wet whilst the forward pack tamed the Singaporeans in tough, muddy and wet conditions.
Three minutes into the second half the Philippines extended their lead through quick thinking, a brilliantly timed quick tap from Dawson finding a flying Justin Villazor Coveney to bust over the white line for another 5 points. Bweheni converted the try to make it 17 to 9.
The Philippines found more breathing space through outside centre Gregory Golmann scoring after a superb line break from the Philippine backline crashing over in the 52nd minute. Bweheni's radar was on securing another two points from the sideline to make it 24 to 9.
Singapore fought back not long after, with a never say die attitude Murray Campbell broke through 25 meters out to set up a 5 pointer for his team. An unsuccessful conversion from Lambert had the Philippines in the lead 24 points to 14 with fifteen minutes on the clock left.
The Singaporeans never held back, grinding away at the Philippines defensive line pushing the team to its limits at times. Ill discipline affected the Philippines with Lambert slotting a crucial penalty to make it 24 to 17 with 5 minutes remaining.
On the 78th minute the Philippines secured the match after Bweheni found space to set up Dawson to close out the match 29 points to 17 and securing the Transcom Rugby Championship.
"The match was played with great spirit from both teams. After a slow start with the rain, the sun came out and was a fiercely contested match. Another positive result for Philippines after a strong game from our players. A proud result considering Singapore are ranked 60th in the world. A big thanks to Transcom, Seapac Philippines and MVP Sports Foundation our sponsors, without their support its hard to be able to host international fixtures. It all contributes to developing the sport in the Philippines" Matt Cullen, Managing Director of the PRFU shared.
The International friendly was held as a pre-preparation match as both teams will compete in the Asia Rugby Championships. The SPI Philippine Volcanoes will depart to Malaysia on May 12 to play Sri Lanka, Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates on May 14, 17 and 20.
Stay connected with us!