This month This Sporting Life covers two major events of two of Bali’s most popular expat football codes – Rugby Union and Australian Rules
RUGBY UNION NEWS
National Rugby 7s Championships: Road to Asian Games – Bali right in the mix!
Rugby Development Bali (PRUI Bali) recently sent two representative senior teams to Jakarta for the National 7s Championships. Reflecting the growth of rugby in Indonesia more than 11 provinces in men and 7 provinces in women participated in the largest and most widely provincially dispersed national competition for Indonesian Rugby. The focus of the 2017 event for Indonesian Rugby (PRUI) was to prepare for hosting rugby at next year’s Asian Games. For Rugby Development Bali (the development program of PRUI Bali) the two teams reflected 12 months of development and effort to grow the game in regional Bali.
Indeed the young squad of 12 Balinese men and 10 Balinese women showed great promise and dedication to their team mates and Rugby Development Bali will look to the future with bright prospects! Certainly this was reflected that at the conclusion of the event, in which notably both the men’s and women’s divisions were won by DKI Jakarta province, Rugby Development Bali could proudly announce 5 of its athletes were selected for the Indonesian national team training squad. Those being: Dewa Gede Dharma, Florian Rizal (both from Tegallalang, Ubud) and Ade Saputra (from Singaraja) in the men; while Elisabet Yikwa (from Denpasar) and Megi Rosita (from Kintamani) were selected for the women squad.
In the competition it self the Bali men and women 7s teams both won 3 games and closely lost 3 games. The talk afterwards was that the Bali women were the surprise team of the tournament having made their first ever appearance. They demonstrated strength, skill and improvement to almost take home the 3rd place trophy: that had to be decided on count back and ultimately was awarded to West Java. Well done team BAGUL, coaches Kurt Lovell and Richardo Bano, medic Faiz Lovell and also support staff Pak Yasa, Pak Arta, Pak Erawan and Ni Kadek Asih. Bali Rugby MANTAP!
For further information contact Bali Rugby at www.facebook.com/balirugby or instagram: prui_bali
Geckos retain Asian title
AFL Asian Championships 2017 – Manila
The Asian Championships of AFL were recently held in Manila with 15 teams competing over two divisions. The team from Bali, the Bali Geckos, competed in division 2 defending the title they won last year in Vietnam.
Ten teams participated in Division 2 with teams from Hong Kong, Singapore, China, Malaysia, Vietnam, a combined team from Thailand/Cambodia/Laos (IndoChina), Myanmar, Macau and newcomers PNG the opponents of the Geckos.PNG was the opening game for the Geckos and being newcomers with a large squad they were considered one of the favourites for the tournament. The Geckos were up to the challenge though and hit their larger opponents with a vigor that set the standard for the day. Geckos ran out winners by 26 points and gave PNG a taste of the competitiveness of Asian AFL Football.
Next up the Geckos accounted for Singapore easily giving them momentum into a difficult clash with China. China had got within a point of the Geckos in the 2016 semifinal and expected to improve on that effort. Accurate kicking from the Geckos and pressure on the Chinese ball players saw the Geckos run out convincing winners 6 goals 2 behinds to 0 goals 5 behinds.It was evident that the coaching of AFL premiership player Rick Olarenshaw had had an impact with the Geckos, with great structure, ball use and pressure being superior to most opponents.
The last game of the qualifying rounds saw the Geckos take on fellow undefeated team, Indochina. The Geckos controlled the game for the majority opening up a 19 point lead with only three minutes to go. A relaxing of effort, a few untimely interchanges and a bit of bad luck saw Indochina score three quick goals to get within a point of the Geckos. The Geckos dug deep and held on for the last minute or so to run out winners of the Pool and progress to the Semi Finals. The knockout semi was against Myanmar who were runners up last year. Another hard fought contest saw the Geckos dominate with better ball use and run out comfortable winners setting up a re-match with Indochina in the final who had taken care of a tiring Vietnam in their semi.
After Geckos President, Greg Hinchliffe, spoke with the team instilling a couple of jedi mind tricks on overcoming their tired legs, the Geckos were in no mood for giving Indochina a look-in during the Grand Final and smashed them from the re-starts slamming on the first 7 goals of the match during the first 10 minutes. It was as dominant a display by any team all day and the Geckos ran out comfortable winners by 9 goals by the final siren. Hinchcliffe continued “Gecko’s local players, Aan, Dachi and Tony all had fantastic tournaments and Peter (Dengue) Fever was adjudged player of the tournament. Bryce Critch and Jaran Pantic added All Asian medals to their premiership medallions and Stuart Cooper was leading goal kicker for the tournament. It was a fantastic team effort by all and we look forward to bringing home more silverware from Division One next year.”
Congratulations from the Bali Advertiser.