How we spent our Saturday afternoon: watching a rugby match at International School Manila, followed by a training session of the Philippine Men’s 15’s National Team.
Everyone needs a change of scenery now and then, and this was ours.
We met national team captain Michael Letts (L) and Austin Dacanay (R), the oldest member of the team at an ancient 33.
Our national rugby team is living proof of my Theory of World Domination: It is composed of Filipino heritage players, nearly all of them children of Filipinos living abroad. They’re half-Pinoy, half-English/Australian/Welsh/Canadian and so on.
The team is coached by Expo Mejia (center), a Filipino whose family migrated to Australia when he was 5. Mejia worked with the Australian team the Waratahs, and now coaches the New York Lions.
Despite our near-total ignorance of Philippine rugby union, we recognized one national team player: the model slash actor Andrew Wolff.
The Philippine Men’s 15’s National Team flies to New Delhi on Monday to compete in the Asian Five Nations Division 2 Championships from June 1 to 6. Mejia says they have a seriously good chance of winning the tournament. I don’t know what kind of television coverage they’ll have, but we can follow their progress on the internet. Now that we know we have a team.
Visit the Philippine Rugby Football Union website.