The Philippine Rugby 7s teams captilized on home field advantage with the Men’s bagging the gold medal and the Women’s outclassing arch rivals Singapore and Malaysia to claim silver, a first in their history.
The Men’s team continued their dominance in southeast Asia winning all six games back-to-back, proving too strong for their opponents. The men’s starting the competition strongly defeating Laos 43 to 0, then overcoming Indonesia 57 to 0. Philippines were tested in the last game on day 1 defeating Thailand 24 to 14. It was the Women’s team however who ran in the first upset of the competition defeating Malaysia 31 to 5 following up with another win over Indonesia 24 to 5. The Women’s however loss their first match of the weekend to top seeds Thailand 38 to 7.
After positive results for day 1, day 2 started just as well with the Women’s team defeating Singapore 14 to 7 in another defining win for the program. The Men’s followed suit holding onto a close victory defeating Singapore 14 to 12, which guaranteed both teams progression to the gold medal match. The women’s team went on to defeat Laos 27 to 0 and the Men’s outclassed Malaysia 24 to 0.
Both teams had progressed to the Gold Medal match with the Women’s taking on Thailand and the Men’s taking on Malaysia. In the first of the finals the women’s team saved their best game to their last knowing Thailand were favourites to win the match. For the entire 14 minutes the Philippines continued to throw everything at the Thais and one point nearly took the lead. Thailand in the end where too strong securing the gold medal with a 17 to 7 victory over a drastically improved Philippine team. Settling for a silver for the first time in their short history. For the Men’s, the Philippines put on a strong performance in the final, shutting out Malaysia early and providing some entertainment for the home crowd. A 19 to 0 victory gave the Philippines a gold medal the best result ever at the Southeast Asian Games as a program. A silver for the women’s and a gold for the men’s.
“An amazing weekend for Philippine Rugby, the results were fantastic. So proud of both teams, especially the women’s, they came in ranked fourth and to finish with a silver medal was well deserved. It’s great to see the Men’s continue to play exciting Rugby and to once again secure that gold medal. We would like to thank each and every organisation for making these games happen, PHISGOC, PSC, POC, our sponsors and all our supporters, a very special time for our Union” shared Jake Letts of Philippine Rugby.
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