The inaugural Saigon Rugby 10’s took part on the weekend of 11th - 12th September, with 6 teams competing for the main trophy.
The Al Fresco’s Group Vietnam and Castelo Concepts Group from Hong Kong hosted and sponsored the tournament.
We had some great teams involved, our host club The Saigon Geckos, an Ex Wallabies team jetting in from Australia, the Classic Buffalos, some very “Big Boys” from Hong Kong Scottish. Cambodia was represented by the snarling Phnom Penn Shining, a very competitive Japanese team Ohayo Nippon and last but no means least the mighty Hanoi Dragons.
The aim of the event was to put Saigon firmly on the map as a destination in Asia to play rugby and have a fantastic time doing it. The Saigon Rugby 10’s was an event for the whole family to enjoy, with a comprehensive hospitality tent, bouncy castles, bucking bull, plus some other surprises in store.. not forgetting the main reason to be there was to watch some exciting 10’s rugby.
The event kicked off with a MASSIVE bang at Cargo Club on the Friday evening, a night of drinking, partying meeting new friends and well… there were numerous stories circulating the following morning!
Saturday, tournament day… bright and early the team buses rolled into RMIT Uni…the teams full of anticipation, nerves and booze, and their, 10 girl strong cheer squads.
A great day of rugby kicked off , a few Sin bin yellows, one celebrity Red, lots of totally committed rugby, some bloody big hits, a broken ankle and a broken nose and 122 players who all gave 100%.
The crowd swelled as the day drew on, the grandstand filled and the Monster Sky and Magners bars did a brisk business.
Hanoi Dragons and Saigon Gecko Barbarians contested the Bowl Final, the Dragons ran out victorious by 4 tries in a “No Holds Bared/ No Love Lost” clash.
The Plate Final, was contested By Hong Kong Scottish Barbarians and The Saigon Geckos. In a tough, well-contested encounter, Hong Kong came through with 2 unanswered tries in an tight evenly matched encounter.
Hong Kong Scottish and Australian Classic Buffalos contested the Grand Final.
This was a bruising encounter with no ground given by either team, Hong Kong pulled away in the first half with 2 unanswered tries.
Australia after a poor first half rallied in the second half and hit Hong Kong with an early try, however, as they pressed to get back on to even terms, Hong Kong hit them again with another try and ran off with the victory.
The teams all grabbed some hard earned beers and boarded their team buses, back to Cargo for the sign off Gala Dinner and presentation.
Jaspas catered a delicious BBQ Buffet and the boys tucked it away, beers, cider, wine and spirits then flowed…
Awards were awarded, more Sky Monsters were downed, more clothing was strewn around the place as the party went into overdrive and that is where this report should and will finish.
The inaugural event went off with a bang, great times were had by all, we saw some great rugby, met new mates, made the usual excuses to our loved ones about our late time keeping…. Roll on 24th September 2016, we can’t wait for the 2nd edition.
We look forward to seeing you in a year…. Until then, Happy Christmas, Happy Chinese New Year, Happy Summer Holidays and see you back in Saigon real soon!!
I will however, like to add one more thing: Ben Cullen, Hong Kong Scottish, was awarded “Best on Ground” for his performance over the 2 days on and off the ground!