FEELS LIKE HOME

By Mars G. Alison |July 11,2018 - 09:12 PM

The Cebu Lady Dragons gather during a press conference at the Semi-Final Sports Bar along General Maxilom Avenue in Cebu City. Mars G. Alison

Cebuanos make it a point to come home and play for Lady Dragons in All Ladies Cebu 10s Rugby Festival

The Cebuano culture is what makes some members of the Cebu Lady Dragons return and play for the team in the Annual All Ladies Cebu 10s Rugby Festival which will be having its 5th edition this Saturday at the Cebu International School grounds.

Team captain Mae Ann Ubaub and Madille Salinas, both from Cebu, have both played for other teams, including the national team, and they have even put up the Makati Chiefs while they were based in Manila while training for the Philippine Lady Volcanoes.

But still, they return each year to represent the Cebu Lady Dragons for the Cebu 10s.

“I’ve played for so many other teams but somehow I don’t feel at home. It is really different when you play for the Cebu Lady Dragons; you really feel at home,” Ubaub said during the press conference of the event yesterday afternoon at the Semi-Final Sports Bar.

Salinas agreed, saying that she always makes it a point to come home and play for the team during the Cebu 10s.

“If you’re a Dragon, you’re always a Dragon.”

However, the team this year will be missing four of its members who will be playing for the Makati Chiefs as they are currently based in Manila being members of the Philippine Lady Volcanoes, the national rugby women’s team. They are Aiumi Ono, Eloise Jordan, Astrid Sadaya and Ica Asentista.

“We had an aging team. Now, we are trying to rebuild the team. We have fresh players and this is good,” said Cebu Lady Dragons head coach Noel Flowers.

Thus, aside from the seven members who helped the Cebu Lady Dragons to a silver finish in the Philippine National Games (PNG), the team is beefed up by girls from the Papua New Guinea who are studying at the University of San Carlos and the University of Southern Philippines Foundation.

Ubaub explained that they opted to have the girls from Papua New Guinea because they have been training with the team since the start of the year.

She added that they were just not able to play for the team during the PNG as they are not Filipinos.

And, the girls also answer to the team’s criteria of commitment, comprehension and culture.

Despite having mostly new players, the Cebu Lady Dragons said they are ready for this Saturday’s tournament.

“We’ve been training for four months, three times a week. We will be playing and we’re also prepared to losing with smiles on our faces,” said Flowers.

The girls from Papua New Guinea are also equally excited to play for the Cebu Lady Dragons.

“We hope the Cebuanos will be proud of us,” said Maossa Unamba.

Yarra Unamba, for her part, said that the most special thing about playing for the Cebu Lady Dragons is the unity.

“Whatever background or country you come from, you join the club and you won’t feel like you’re different from them.”

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