The Philippine Volcanoes aims to reign supreme in the grand final of the Division 1 Asia Rugby Championships as the team defends the title it won 12 months ago on home soil. The Philippine national rugby union team will face its Singaporean counterpart on June 1, 2019 at 7:00 pm at Taipei Municipality Stadium in Taipei, Taiwan.
Having come through unscathed against the higher ranked Sri Lanka, the Philippines will now be favorites to take the title in Chinese Taipei. This is an opportunity for the 15s to continue the good work with a busy year ahead with Olympic Games qualifiers, the Asia Rugby Sevens Series and a home SEA Games.
Philippine Volcanoes captain Danny Matthews believes his side can step it up another level from that which saw them beat the Sri Lanka Tuskers 39-22 in the semi-finals on May 29, 2019 at the Taipei Municipal Stadium. He said, “I know if we stick to our game plan we will be fine.”
Matthews also played a pivotal role in the Philippines Hong Kong Sevens victory over Zimbabwe earlier this year. He shared, “We have to channel our energy and we have to be professional.”
“It is a big game but we know what we are capable of and know where we want to take this team,” Matthews continued. “We have a process which got us the win on Wednesday and will hopefully get us the win on Saturday. We need to take a step up from where we were against Sri Lanka.”
More than 85,000 people tuned in to watch both of the Division 1 Asia Rugby Championships semi-finals and the grand final is likely to draw in a similar crowd online with passionate fans watching from afar. Meanwhile, here is a clip from the final training of the Philippine Volcanoes prior to the grand final:
The match will be streamed live, as well as the third place play-off between Sri Lanka and Chinese Taipei, on Asia Rugby’s Facebook page (@asia.rugby)