15's rugby league launches with 4 teams
by Dave Delgado
Guam - Heineken and Tropical Productions have teamed up to put on the first ever men's 15 a side rugby league. A press conference for the Heineken Rugby 15's League was held at Meskla on the Cove this morning. 4 teams make up the inaugural league with games being played every Saturday at the U.O.G Field.
Matt Sgro, Heineken Rugby 15's president, said, "Tropical Productions and Heineken are really excited to put on the first ever Heineken Rugby 15's this year. Last year we threw the rugby 7's ad the beach rugby tournament, which were 2 of the most successful and premiere rugby events that our island has seen in the last 3 years. So this year we really wanted to get into the 15's and the great thing about this league is that the talent is extremely spread out. We have national players on every team and guys that have played in New Zealand, San Diego, Seattle, and Portland even the East Coast. I think the fans are going to be treated to some high-class men's rugby action. The good thing about this league is that a 100 percent of the admissions every Saturday will go towards the Make-A-Wish Foundation and will help grant a specific wish to a local boy in need of our assistance."
Action kicks off this Saturday with 2 games played during the day with the first game being played at 1:00 pm. Admission is $2.00 for adults ages 13 and up. Here's what some of the team captains from the 4 respective teams had to say about the upcoming league.
Chris Sgro, with the Chiefs, told KUAM Sports, "This has been over the last 12 months a great outlet that Heineken has put together for rugby development on Guam. High school rugby development has taken off since 2005 and there has really been a slump in the last couple of years for the men's league so Heineken has really started the trend and we are looking for more leagues to come, moving forward from here."
Rob Leon Guerrero with the Lions said, "A lot of us are versed in 7's and 10's and that calls for a lot of speed and a lot of endurance. But with 15's there is a lot of physical play and that brings in a whole new aspect of the game and it's really going to test us and I think everyone here is looking forward to it and the league is going to benefit from this kind of action and this kind of talent spread across the 4 teams."
Joe Mateo from Da Doks said, "Talent is spread pretty well and with more rugby on Guam it will help us better ourselves and hopefully train the individuals for off island competition."
And the Ryderz's Gerard Aguon noted, "Usually we have only a few tournaments throughout the year, so thanks to Heineken we can have more tournaments and more time to play against each other and improve our skills."