Backed by MVP Sports Foundation, the Philippine Sports Commission and First Pacific, the Lady Volcanoes are all set for their first preparation tournament for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games. The Philippine National Women’s Rugby Team is relying on foreign exposure to aid their preparations as they aim for a podium finish in the SEA Games in December 2019.
“The more competitions we play in,” Lady Volcanoes athlete Acee San Juan said. “The better we are going to be prepared. Our domestic competitions are improving.”
“However, international exposure allows our skills and abilities to be tested at the highest level,” Juan added. Her team will find other SEA nations competing in the same event as both Singapore and Malaysia have been listed as other competing nations.
“The Borneo Sevens is an international and invitational rugby tournament where top teams throughout the world travel to compete,” Philippine Rugby general manager Jake Letts said. “For both men’s and women’s, teams from Japan, Hong Kong, Australia, Russia and even Belgium compete in the tournament.”
The Lady Volcanoes have selected a Development 12 consisting mainly of players who have been training consistently with the national program over the last two months and all in contention for selection for the SEA Games. The team will be coached by Andy Brown, former Jamaican National Sevens Coach.
“Coach Andy brings a wealth of experience, so we are lucky to have his leadership for the national women’s program,” Letts said. “The Philippines face Pearls Japan, the Hong Kong Dragons, and Singapore Development in Pool A on Saturday. The finals will be seeded after the round robin pool play and played on Sunday.”
Up until December 2019, the Lady Volcanoes are following extensive preparations. Following the Borneo Sevens, the team will compete in the Asia Rugby Women’s Championships in June 2019 followed by the Trophy Series in August 2019 in Indonesia and another foreign exposure tour in November 2019.
The aim of the Lady Volcanoes is to finish once again on the podium in the 2019 SEA Games where they secured the Bronze medal back in 2015. The 12 players selected for Development 12 are Kaia Briela Padilla Baui, Leonor Casinillo Boroy, Alyana Ysabel Siongco Del Fierro, Aldee Faith Lyde Pielago Denuyo, Kaye Llanie Perez Honoras, Helena Roxanne Aguilar Indigne, Ma. Isabella Angeles Baltazar Nepumuceno, Aiumi Villarba Ono, Rassiel Adonis Sales, Maricar Villamor Samson, Angella Camille San Juan and Sylvia Selfaison Tudoc.
The Borneo Sevens will be hosted at the Eagles Rugby Rugby Club in Sandakan, Sabah, Malaysia on March 23-24, 2019. Matches kick off at 9:00 a.m.
Meanwhile, here is a clip featuring the Lady Volcanoes: