Team Captains set for the 2019 JML Premiership Shield. Pictured here with Headline Sponsor and Managing Director of JML Philippines, Steve Payne
Philippine Rugby will launch the 2019 domestic 15s season this Saturday, at Southern Plains, Calamba.
The JML Premiership Shield will feature eight teams across Luzon coming together for over 14 rounds. Teams are ranked in one division, across two pools based on last years standings.
The Eagles RFC are top seeds and will face the HMR Ibons, Clark Jets and the Manila Carabaos in Pool A. The Manila Nomads will be ranked top of Pool B to face the Santos Knight Frank Mavericks, the Albay Bulkans and the Makati Chiefs.
Local teams will be boosted by national player contingents. Some exciting talent to feature each week, with the likes of Joe Palabay Dawson, Jonel Madrona, Lito Ramirez, Jeremy Hernandez, Nick Jones, Edlen Hernandez, Ian Pausanos, Reymarc Bustillo, Steven Near, David Feeney, Timothy Bweheni, Jovic Paypon and Ric Bellen all key members for their local clubs.
“This year will be a first for the PRFU, all eight Luzon based teams in one division. It’s going to be exciting to see each week. Teams will be seeded and ranked accordingly by the end of the regular season and it will break off to a Top 4 and bottom 4 for the playoffs. Only one team will be crowned Premiership champions” shared Jovan Masalunga of Philippine Rugby.
The 15s domestic season has a strong history for over 15 years, with Rugby predominately starting from the Nomads Rugby Club. Come 2019, the club will feature three teams, two male, one female, a first in its history.
“Nomads Rugby Club has been around for decades, this week they not only continue their legacy but also add to it with the launch of their first ever 15s women’s team. It will be a special occasion for such an iconic club team in the Philippines” shared Jake Letts, General Manager for the PRFU.
The women’s 15s division will see four teams vying for the title. The Eagles RFC, the Makati Chiefs, the Santos Knight Frank Mavericks and the Manila Rogues. All teams face off in a round robin format before the final playoffs. The women's competition equally exciting with the likes of Aiumi Ono, Rassiel Sales, Sylvia Tudoc and Hilla Indigne all taking the field for their respective clubs. An U19s Colts Division will continue for the regular season, as both the Eagles RFC and the SKF Mavericks continue their programs with established player pathways for their Junior Programs. Another positive development for Philippine Rugby.
As the first week kicks off this Saturday, the opening game will feature the Santos Knight Frank Mavericks taking on the Manila Rogues in the women’s division. For the men's division, top seeds Eagles RFC will face the Manila Carabaos followed by the match of the day where the Santos Knight Frank Mavericks take on the Manila Nomads. Games kick off from 12:00 pm, followed by 1:45 pm start for the second match and the final game at 3:30 pm.
Youth Rugby kicks off to start the morning, where Junior Touch Rugby teams will open the day from 9:00 am until 11:30 am. Entry is free. The return of Saturday is Rugby Day is back in the Philippines!
8 Men's Team Captains pictured with Headline Sponsor Steve Payne of JML Philippines
4 Women's Team Captains pictured with Headline Sponsor Steve Payne of JML Philippines
Round 1 Match Up - The Santos Knight Frank Mavericks will be up against the newly formed Manila Rogues. Represented by Team Captains Sylvia Tudoc and Bianca Natola.
Eagles RFC will launch their defence title against the Manila Carabaos. Pictured Ph Volcano Joe Palabay Dawson and Liam Shaw.
The Manila Nomads take on the Santos Knight Frank Mavericks. Pictured as Team Captains Nick Jones and Lito Ramirez.