Manila, Philippines: The Philippine Residents XV, a feeder program to the Philippine Volcanoes capped off their first match in 2018 with a victory defeating Guam 35 to 22 in the 2018 Austronesian Cup keeping their perfect record to three wins, from three matches.
The Residents XV boasts a remarkable record since the program started in 2016. Residents XV is a team of local residents featuring past, present and future Volcanoes. The national program has used Philippine soil as a fortress, defeating international rugby teams from Malaysia, Singapore, and finally as recently as of Saturday, Team Guam.
“Playing at home is always special, the vibe, the atmosphere and the fans play a huge role in a team’s success” shared Philippine Volcano Harry Dionson Morris.
The home team started strongly from the first whistle, taking a 7-point to nil lead four minutes into the match. An attacking run from Philippine Volcano Jackson Junior Pato off a line out set out the pace for the Philippine Team. Robert Amalay Jones had no difficulties converting the extra two points.
Not long after Joe Palabay Dawson capitalized on open space and a loose ball after a brilliant piece off a counter attack put together by Greg Golman and Jones which took the lead to 14 points to 0 after nine minutes. The match looked to be a one sided affair, with the Philippines continuing to put pressure on the visitors and with back-to-back tries from Taniela Turaga and Evans Atandi shot the Philippines to healthy 28 points to nil after 27 minutes.
With the Residents comfortably in front before half time, Guam’s fight back begun with two quick tries by Matt Sojo & Chris Sgro, settling on a half time score of 28 to 12 in favour of the home team.
“Our team started off very well, played to their structures for the first 30 minutes. Pleasing to score four unanswered tries to begin with. Unfortunately they lost their way a little late in the first half, something we have to improve on moving forward” shared Chris Everingham, the Performance Manager for the Volcanoes.
The second half started off in favour for the Residents with Clark Jet Kingsley Ballesteros crossing over putting in a comfortable lead 35 to 12. All but seemed out of reach for Guam however with a never say die attitude the visitors fought and crawled their way back with two consultation tries decreasing the points differential to 35 to 22. Ballesteros finished with the Best on Ground performance for Team Philippines.
“It was good to get the win; our international season has started off well. Credit to Guam, playing three matches in one week and never giving up. They deserved their Division 3 East title win earlier in the week. We are grateful to have matched up well against them on their return home from their Asia Rugby Championships” said Jake Letts of Philippine Rugby.
The Philippine Volcanoes will be competing in their respective Asia Rugby Championships this June, the National Women’s Team to travel to Singapore to play India and Singapore while the Men will host Singapore in Manila for a two match international series to decide the Division 1 Title.
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