BALL GAMES

2019 Asia Rugby Division 1 Women’s Championships: Philippine Lady Volcanoes vs India in Calamba, Laguna

Philippine Lady Volcanoes (© Asia Rugby, Singapore Rugby)

Philippine Lady Volcanoes (© Asia Rugby, Singapore Rugby)

The 2019 Asia Rugby Division 1 Women’s Championships will be in Calamba, Laguna, Philippines on June 19-22, 2019. This gives the home crowd advantage to the Philippine women’s national rugby sevens team, known as the Lady Volcanoes, which will go against its Indian counterpart.

Recently, Philippine Rugby agreed to host the championships to ensure the competition had sufficient support. It was originally scheduled to be played outside the country.

“We hosted the Asia Rugby Men’s Championships last year,” Philippine Rugby general manager Jake Letts said. “When the request came to look to host the Women’s Championships, we decided we wanted to be able to give the same opportunities for our women’s to play on home soil.”

In 2018, the Lady Volcanoes finished second in Division 1. This year, the Philippines will be aiming to go one better and do so in front of a home ground.

“We play India in our first game,” Lady Volcanoes halfback Acee San Juan shared. “Hopefully, we can get a win and progress to the final. Last year, we were successful over India. We are looking to achieve the same result next Wednesday.”

The Volcanoes will be seeded second behind Singapore and ahead of both India and China. The competition between all nations looks to be fairly contested.

“Women’s Rugby in Asia is consistently growing and attracting more women and girls to play,” Letts said. “It’s an exciting era for our sport. It’s also positive to see each nation evenly contested in this competition. It’s going to be close between all matches and exciting to watch.”

Among the experienced players of the Lady Volcanoes are Rassiel Sales, Sylvia Tudoc and Aiumi Ono. The National Women’s program has consistently been preparing under Head Coach Andy Brown and Performance Coach Chris Everingham over the last two months and has been sufficiently supported by the MVP Sports Foundation, First Pacific and Philippine Sports Commission.

The first match will be on June 19, 2019 at 3:30 p.m. against India at Southern Plains Sports Field in Calamba. The winner will play either Singapore or China on June 22, 2019.

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