For the second year in a row the Philippines National Rugby League (PNRL), PAL Tamaraws defeated the Thailand Rugby League Association (TRLA), Thailand Stars this time on home soil 46-10 at the Philippine Merchant Marine Academy (PMMA) in San Narciso, Zambales.
The victory was made even sweeter with the victory coming in front of over 1,500 local fans who had only had their first taste of Rugby League the previous Saturday with the Zambales 9s tournament.
The match played in four, twenty minute quarters started as in 2012 with a try in the 3rd minute, but this time from William Dreeves.
But unlike 2012 when the Thailand Stars failed to register any points. This new look side struck back immediately with Brett Clarke making history for Thailand by scoring their first ever International Rugby League try.
With a stunned home crowd the PAL Tamaraws rose to the occasion with the first quarter ending with back to back tries with Andrew Everingham and Sean Lynch both scoring on debut. So the Philippines went into the first break leading 16-6.
The PAL Tamaraws started the second quarter like the first with Andrew Everingham scoring his second by bursting through the Thailand Stars defence in their half and scoring in the 6th minute of the quarter.
The second quarter became a defensive battle for the PAL Tamaraws with a number of penalties leading to grinding work many a time on their own line. So it did not come as a surprise with so many penalties going against them that the Thailand Stars Brett Clarke scored his second try in the last minute of the quarter with the scores locked at 22-10 going into half time.
Coaches Clayton Watene and Mark De Ubago rallied their players instructing them to adjust their play based on the quality of the on field refereeing.
The PAL Tamaraws did as their coaches instructed and were rewarded with back to back tries in the third quarter with William Dreeves scoring his second try in the 10th minute followed by another from Dennis Gordon 2 minutes later. The third quarter ended with the PAL Tamaraws leading 34-10.
The last quarter was similar to the third with a tiring Thailand Stars side conceding a try to debutant prop Micah Hines in the 3rd minute. With the tournament ending as it started with William Dreeves scoring a hat trick in the 15th minute with the final score being 46-10 to end the Second Asian Cup.
The local crowd were as ecstatic as the players. It took a good half an hour to pry the players from their supporters with both the PAL Tamaraws and Thailand Stars spending time getting photos taken and getting the players to autograph their programs.
As with the Back to Back Asian Cup win the winner of the Charkes-Watene Man of the Match medal was also 2012’s recipient, William Dreeves.
PAL Tamaraws squad:
1. Luke Srama (Southport) Capt
2. Glenn Power (St Clair Comets) VC
3. Ashley Black (Balmain RUFC)
4. Fred Colina (Belrose)
5. Will Dreves (Mounties)
6. Andrew Everingham (Fukuoka Sanix Blues RUFC) – Japan
7. Chris Everingham (Alabang Eagles RUFC) – Philippines
8. Robby Geraghty (Eden Tigers)
9. Richard Goodwin (Narrabeen Sharks)
10. Dennis Gordon (Tweed Coast Raiders)
11. Kevin Gordon (Gold Coast Titans)
12. Mica Hines (Booval Swifts)
13. Daniel Kucia (Dunstonians RUFC) – England
14. Sean Lynch (Townsville Brothers)
15. Arwin Marcus (Tweed Coast Raiders)
16. Rene Payne (Tweed Coast Raiders)
17. Marc Russell (Wentworthville Magpies)
18. Paul Sheedy (N/A)
19. Ned Stephenson (Dunstonians RUFC) – England
20. Kyle Weh (Oakdale Workers)
Asian Cup Score Card 46-10
PAL Tamaraws (Tries: William Dreeves 3, Andrew Everingham 2, Sean Lynch, Dennis Gordon, Micah Hines, Conversions: William Dreeves 7)
Thailand Stars (Tries: Brett Clarke 2, Conversion: James Potter)