Philippines National Team Meet Western Australia in International Friendly

‘HAVOC in Manila’ event headlines a weekend of American Football

Manila, Philippines

The newly formed American Tackle Football Association of the Philippines (ATFAP), with its ImPACT (I Am Pilipinas Aguilas Club Training Pool) Program, presented a friendly match with the Western Australia Raiders at the Emperador Stadium in Manilla, Philippines.

The final score of the friendly was 56 -7 in favor of the Western Australia Raiders, but the team from the Philippines took away many positives from the match-up. The Aguilas highlight was scoring on a long bomb touchdown pass to Ivan Klaric.

Birth of a Sport in the Philippines

ATFAP officials said they’re holding the event as part of their commitment to promote the sport and build a program to prepare them for the 2016 IFAF Asia American Football competition.

At present, ATFAP has around 300 players playing regular games. From these, the group has culled the national team called the Pilipinas Aguilas.

“Last April, the Aguilas went to Tokyo, Japan to face the long-time dominant force of Asia. The Philippines lost by a big margin, but that was to be expected from a three-month program from the Philippines against an 80-year program from Japan,” said ATFAP’s J.J. Cocjin.

After their trip to Toyko, the ATFAP has invited two international teams to come over for full international friendly matches and to help train the Aguilas.

Under the ImPACT Program, any Filipino and foreigner can register and be part of the pool and undergo training to develop their individual fundamentals and skills under the Aguilas.

The objective is to invite coaches, players and referees, both Filipinos and foreigners, who have experienced coaching, playing or officiating American football in any level. They will then voluntarily train Filipinos who want to excel in the sport.

Part of the training will be for both the Filipinos and foreigners to play side by side in either a local mix-up game or an international friendly.

“This is sharing of football knowledge first hand,” said Cocjin.

Part of the program is to form an all-foreigner team coming from the Aguilas Club members. You can learn more about the Pilipinas Aguilas club on Facebook here.

“This all-foreigner team will be called the “Day-U-Won” or in Filipino language “Dayuhan.” The Day-U-Won team will test these Filipinos in an annual game of real American football, testing what they have learned from their foreign teammates/mentors,” the ATFAP said.

The end goal is to build and improve as a team to better compete in the international tournaments, particular the IFAF Asian Continental Championship.


Photo via:

Aguilas v. WA Raiders

John McKeon is a former professional and collegiate American Football player and coach now living and working in New York. His goal is to spread news, information, and opinion on the global growth of the sport he loves.