KUALA LUMPUR (18 JUNE 2013): The International Power Royal 7’s Rugby 2013, one of the most prestigious event in the game’s local calendar, promises another chapter of thrills and spills on June 29-30 at the Seremban Municipal Council ground.
The Royal Sevens not only marks an auspicious day for the Negeri Sembilan Rugby Union (NSRU), who will be celebrating its 60th Anniversary, but will also be an occasion to remember for seven-time champions Negeri Sembilan Wanderers.
Wanderers, the defending champions, who are known as ‘Perantau’ in their infancy days, will celebrate its 30th anniversary soon since the club’s formation in 1984. Taking all this into consideration, Wanderers may just prove to be a bane to the opposition as they map out a strategy in their quest for an eighth championship title.
The other clubs who emerged champions of the International Power Royal Sevens were Bantura Orange (2001), STAROBA (2002), Chinese Taipei RC (2003) and Sandakan Eagles (2006, 2010).
YAM Tunku Naquiyuddin Tuanku Ja’afar, the royal patron for both Negeri Sembilan Rugby Union and NS Wanderers, believes this year’s edition of the International Power Royal Sevens 2013 has all the savoury ingredients of an exciting start, and an explosive finish.
“This year is significant because we have reached a new milestone and it will also be our 15th anniversary organising the International Power Royal Sevens,” said Tunku Naquiyuddin at a press conference to announce the Royal Sevens in Kuala Lumpur today. “With the growing support from foreign clubs and the fond memories of last year’s final still lingering in our minds, I am confident fans will be entertained to another thrilling encounter this year.”
Tunku Naquiyuddin added that the Negeri Sembilan RU success story comes down to a holistic approach in developing players and with it, the community in the state.
“What makes us different is the way rugby envelopes the whole family which makes it more than just about winning or losing. When we have tournaments in the state such as the Royal Sevens, so many families come out to watch and have a good time together,” said Tunku Naquiyuddin.
Twenty-four teams will battle for the coveted trophy in the Senior Club category which includes 2003 champions Chinese Taipei RFC and Singapore Police RC while the local challenge will be led by NS Wanderers, Cobra Club (champions in 1999 and 2011), Kris Conlay, RMAF Blackhawks, Bandaraya Dragon, Iskandar Raiders, and Royal Selangor Club (RSC Dog) to name a few.
Rugby fans can expect Kris Conlay’s confidence level to be at an all-time high during the International Power Royal Sevens, having recently secured their maiden Super League title. They are coached by former international Hisham Hassan.
Four foreign clubs are among 20 schools to feature in the schools division of this year’s edition. South Africa will be led by Trafalgar College, who emerged champions in 2011, and Islamia College. Both schools are based in Cape Town. The others are Chinese Taipei RFC and Singapore Police Juniors RC.
The local challenge, however, is spearheaded by defending champions Tunku Mahkota Ismail Sports School (SSTMI) from Johor. SSTMI finished third in the recently concluded Malaysian Rugby Union Super League, but reached the final of the Super Cup against Brunei Eagles.
NSRU president, Haji Abdul Jalil Haji Borhanuddin, said there have been numerous requests from several other schools and clubs to be included in this year’s Royal Sevens, but due to time constraints as the event is held over two days, they have no alternative but to reject these requests.
“But our options are open to these schools. Due to the popularity of the Royal Sevens, we may invite them to ‘feel the excitement’ of the tournament next year. However, we will not compromise on quality as we hope rugby in Negeri Sembilan will continue to grow, both in quality and popularity,” added Jalil.
The State Government, he said, has been very supportive of the International Power Royal Sevens over the years, and extended his gratitude to Menteri Besar, Dato’ Seri Utama Hj Mohamad Hj Hasan, as well as to sponsors Bata Malaysia, Milo, 100 Plus, Standard Chartered Bank, Sapura Holdings, Westports Malaysia, and all others who have made the event a success.
The Teams – Club Category: Cobra Rugby Club, Kris Conlay RC, Asas Rugby Club, Negeri Sembilan Wanderers, Bandaraya Dragon Kuala Lumpur, Iskandar Raiders, Chinese Taipei Rugby Football Union; Maxinutrition Rebels, RSC Dog, Scorpion Putrajaya, Malacca High School, Majlis Perbandaran Klang, Sikamat Gunners, ORCA, Kelab Ragbi JLJ DiRaja, TUDM Blackhawks, SSTMI Senior; Singapore Police RC, NS Perantau, Mersing Eagles RC, Kelab Ragbi Polis DiRaja Malaysia; POGA, Taiping Tigers RC, and Johor Blues.
Schools Category– Chinese Taipei Rugby Football Union (Junior), Islamia College (Cape Town), Trafalgar College (Cape Town), Scorpion Putrajaya (Junior), Singapore Police Junior RC, Bintang RC, SMK Za’aba (Kuala Pilah); Sek. Tunku Ja’afar (Kuala Pilah), SDAR Seremban, Kuching RFC; SSTMI Johor; KGV Seremban, Samsera Perlis, Arau Perlis, English College Johor Bharu; Sek. Tunku Abdul Rahman (STAR), SM Sains Hulu Selangor (SEMASHUR), Malay College Kuala Kangsar, Sek Men. Sains Tuanku Muhriz and Sek. Men. Berasrama Penuh Integrasi, Jempol.
Released by Shekhinah PR on behalf of Negeri Sembilan Rugby Union.
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