Can ISM Varsity Rugby Boys Retain the Gold at IASAS 2017?
Article by Josh Miller
The resumption of classes every January may not be to all people’s delight. Following an extended, relaxing 3-week December break, it is difficult for most to get back into the habit of heading back to school so early in the morning. However, the break wasn’t all relaxation for many of ISM’s athletes as second season IASAS tournaments are only weeks away.
While ISM is set to play host to the annual IASAS basketball tournament this year, many will flock to the livestreams to watch as ISM’s swimming, tennis, rugby and touch teams battle to strike gold abroad. Although ISM’s tennis and touch teams have generally been dominant powerhouses at IASAS, ISM’s varsity boys rugby team made a name for themselves by winning a historic gold medal at home last year. Having come fourth the previous year, a maiden appearance in the final and overcoming the defending champions ISKL in extra time made for unforgettable scenes at the far corner of the HS Field.
However, as half the gold-medal-winning team was composed of seniors and key players who have left since, many wonder if the ISM varsity boys rugby will be able to defend their title when they travel to Jakarta Intercultural School from February 1-5, 2017.
As one of the rugby team’s new faces, freshman Reed S. shares, “I am honored to represent ISM at IASAS this year. IASAS is a unique experience that I have dreamed of since I was younger.”
Last year, Reed watched from the stands as ISM won its first IASAS rugby gold. He looks forward to this year’s edition of the tournament as “an amazing chance to prove to everyone that last year was not just luck.”
Meanwhile, gold-medal-winning junior Wiremu O.B. says, “Although we are a fairly new and young team compared to last year, I believe we still had a phenomenal start to the season.”
Although many key players were lost, Wiremu says, “Our team does really well shifting the ball around the field and keeping the ball alive through offloads.” Despite this, Wiremu still identifies many things the team can still work on before the tournament such as “learning to communicate with each other to create maximum efficiency around the field.”
Only time will tell whether or not a repeat of last year’s success is in order for the boys, but until then it can be certainly said that the team will ensure no stones are left unturned in the training ground. Come first week of February, perhaps they will again make history by going back-to-back!