The Bahay Bata Foundation U14 Rugby Team defeated Clifton College by 24 points to 0 in wet and windy conditions at the Clifton College Sports Complex on Tuesday, 10 May.
The game is the first in a two-match series with the second game scheduled on Thursday, 16 May at 4.30pm. The Clifton College squad is made up of 32 players who will be traveling to Australia this July to play four top-level private schools in both Sydney and Brisbane. Half the squad played in yesterday's game and the other half will compete to try and even the series on Thursday.
In wet, cold conditions it was the Bahay Bata Captain and flyhalf Ryan Padilla who dazzled the Clifton defence with one of Coach Cullen's favourite plays, the "Chooky 2", which is a dummy switch move on the inside center. The entire Clifton College backline fell for the play and Ryan ran in under the posts to score the opening try. Because of the rainy conditions, the ball was slippery and both teams dropped plenty of ball. In the end it was the Bahay Bata team that had the forward momentum and managed to find some holes on the edge of the ruck that were exposed by the halfback Jolen Madrona, who scooped on two loose balls at the base of the ruck to score two runaway tries.
The game finished with John Mark Manaloto supporting another break by Jolen Madrona and they linked up to score the forth try of the game and win the first game by 24 - 0.
The parents, boys and coaches enjoyed an after match function at the Clifton College Sports Complex and everyone was very impressed with the Bahay Bata performance in the first game.
The Man of the Match was awarded to Ryan Padilla and the Clifton College coach asked if he was available to represent Clifton on the Australian tour.
Obviously the Clifton College team will regroup and the next squad will be more prepared for the Bahay Bata attacking plays and forward momentum.
Day 2: Training & Bristol Zoo
The day began with a 9am training run at the Clifton College Sports Complex that includes 12 Rugby Fields. The hosts allowed the Bahay Bata Team to train on the No. 1 pitch which was recently constructed as an IRB accredited Astroturf pitch. The boys certainly had to run the cobwebs out of their system after the 20 hours of travel and they trained alongside the Varsity Team until 11am. The Sports Complex has its own cafeteria and the boys were treated to a quality lunch of Potatoes, Baked Beans, Salad, Tuna and fruit.
Unbelievably the temperature hit 26 degrees today and the team walked 5km back to the school through the beautiful countryside of Bristol and were treated to the lovely Victorian-style houses that lined the cobblestone roads.
After arriving back at Clifton College at 1pm, the team were escorted next door to the Bristol Zoo. This proved to be an incredible afternoon with the 15 boys walking through an array of Animal Shelters and attractions that were world class and allowed the students to view animals such as Gorillas, Hippopotamus, Monkeys, Snakes, and Lions.
The day then concluded with a second training session with the Clifton College u14 team on the main field in front of the historic building that will turn 150 years old in 2012.
Day 3: Tour of Bath City, Fun Rugby Festival and the Aviva Premier Division Match
The day began as a wet and windy morning with a 30-minute bus ride to Bath City which is located 25 km South East of Bristol. Luckily, the group arrived at the historic city to sunny weather and the day started with a tour of the ancient Roman Baths and a general stroll through the 2000 year old streets of Bath. At 11am they crossed the bridge to enter the "REC" stadium and participate in the Fun Rugby Festival that was attended by up to 150 other local mini rugby players from clubs situated all around Bath.
The Bahay Bata Team were the main attraction and captivated everyone with their pace and skills and ended up winning the Juniors Touch Rugby Competition. The Bath Rugby Club also arranged a number of fun activities for all the children including Bouncy Castles, Reverse Bungee Races, Face Painting, John Deere Tractor Displays, food stalls and a wide range of Rugby Skill related activities. The boys loved the interaction with the other children and made a number of new friends throughout the Rugby Festival.
On Wednesday, May 4, 15 children from Bahay Bata Foundation headed to the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in preparation for their 1.30am flight to Bristol, England. A product of almost 12 months of preparation by the PRFU and the Foundation, the trip is a project of Touraid, a UK based charity that offers support to UK schools and clubs wishing to host activity based tours for disadvantaged children from overseas, in cooperation with Clifton College, the tour host.
The children were extremely excited and overwhelmed by their coming adventure and at the same time suffering with the strict rules and regulations of having to navigate through the unknown territory of an international airport. Luckily Mercy, the boys’guardian at Bahay Bata and PRFU Consultant, Matt Cullen were on hand to make this transition a little easier.
Upon boarding the Etihad flight, all the boys forgot any fears they may have had of flying, and instead became immediately addicted to the personal TV screen that came with the Playstation packages. They took full advantage of having their own personal theater and game station with all of them playing games for practically the entire trip.
During the stop-over at Abu Dhabi, the group spent a relaxing 2 hrs in the airport lounge and then departed for the second leg of the journey to London, England which would take another 7hrs. The boys continued to enjoy the games on the Playstations, and it seemed as though they were never going to sleep.
Mr. James Breeze from Clifton College and Mr. Andy Berry of Touraid were on hand to meet the boys upon their arrival at Heathrow Airport. The two were absolutely ecstatic that the PRFU had managed to bring all the Bahay Bata children on the tour without any major passport, Visa and travel problems. The boys jumped on a bus that would take them across England from Heathrow to Bristol, and with the Playstations now gone, the boys finally fell asleep and enjoyed 3 hrs of rest after the epic 20 hrs of travel.
On arrival at Clifton College the boys were greeted by a group of equally excited parents and students who were waiving a large Filipino Flag. John Milne, the Prep school Principal, was on hand to welcome all the boys and the boys then met their respective home stay families.
The Clifton College students immediately welcomed the Bahay Bata children and from first observations it looks as though some very worthwhile relationships will be formed between the children from differing countries, cultures and socio-economic backgrounds.
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