Article by: Andrea M.

Several bombings that occurred in central Jakarta, Indonesia on January 14th, 2016 sparked alarm among the IASAS community as the threatened city is also the home of Jakarta Intercultural School, where IASAS Touch and Rugby 2016 was originally meant to be held at the end of the month. Because of the bombings, the IASAS board made the unanimous decision to to relocate IASAS Touch and Rugby to Manila, as many parents and faculty from the IASAS community were quickly concerned the proposed travel to Jakarta so soon after the event.

According to ATAC Director, Mr. Pekin, “Due to the incident in Jakarta, a number of the IASAS schools and their parents had reservations about sending teams there. The IASAS heads of school discussed late into the evening of January 15th, and ultimately decided that for the best interests of the students, parents and the tournament, IASAS touch and rugby needed to be moved. ISM offered to host on short notice and this proposal was accepted unanimously by the IASAS board.”

With such a large, collective group of athletes to be travelling to IASAS Touch and Rugby 2016, comes great responsibility as a host school, as both ISM and JIS already know from hosting tournaments in the past. The announcement to move IASAS Touch and Rugby became official on the morning of January 16th, meaning there remained less than two weeks for ISM and ATAC to accomplish what usually takes many months to do in terms of planning an IASAS event. This planning must be completed with attention to detail, as such great responsibility lies in the hands of the host school for a safe and enjoyable tournament. Planning includes everything from ensuring all 140 travelling athletes are housed, to booking facilities, vendors, and additional staff to ensure that the event runs smoothly. However, one major burden in the planning process was lifted early due to the amazing amount of Bearcat community spirit, as all 140 athletes have been housed in less than three days, following the announcement of the change of location of the tournament.

The announcement to move IASAS locations definitely came as a shock for the athletes. Tiffany L., a sophomore who will be competing on the touch team, will now be playing her first IASAS on her home field. Although very excited, Tiffany feels as though the more she thinks about it, the more nervous she becomes. Tiffany told BT, “This is my first IASAS, and it’s a lot of pressure being at home… and I just don’t want to let the ISM community down.”

Following the hype of IASAS soccer that ISM hosted in October, Josh M., a junior on both the varsity soccer and rugby teams, is also excited to have a second IASAS at home, especially considering the two have occurred in a row. Josh told BT, “I’m kinda bummed because of the circumstances of how this happened, but I’m fired up right now because it’ll be great to play in front of the massive crowds again.”

Although IASAS touch and rugby will now be hosted in Manila, it will still be considered a JIS event, as the two schools have now become co-hosts, according to Mr. Pekin. He says that all the merchandise and posters will still come from JIS, including the IASAS patches.

Because IASAS rugby and touch will now be hosted in Manila, be sure to take this special opportunity to support your Bearcats on our home pitch, as well as our swimmers, tennis, and basketball players on livestream!

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