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History

THE POT BELLIED PIGS RUGBY FOOTBALL CLUB
(A potted history)


The Pot Bellied Pigs were formed in 1997 with an initial tour to Manila. The first touring squad consisted entirely of the social players seconded from Hong Kong’s various rugby clubs. In the inaugural game against the Manila Nomads, the Pot Bellied Pigs, living up to the name, fielded a team which included fourteen front row forwards.

Since inception, the Pot Bellied Pigs have gone from strength to strength with a formal club structure established in 2001 and affiliated with the Hong Kong Rugby Union. The Pot Bellied Pigs are now predominantly a touring side drawing on like-minded rugby players from clubs all over Asia and beyond who adhere to the true amateur spirit of the game of rugby union.

The Pot Bellied Pigs attend rugby tournaments held in many cities in Asia, including, Manila, Jakarta, Phuket, Bangkok, Macau, Bali, Pattaya, Seoul, Phnom Penh and Hat Yai. The more social the tournament, the more likely they are to be there. In addition, the Potbellies gather often to host and play games versus rugby teams visiting Hong Kong, as a farewell to departing friends, or for charitable purposes.

The Pot Bellied Pigs are tournament favorites throughout Asia, resplendent in their touring kit, which is different for every tour but is always a combination of the club colours of pink, lime green, yellow and blue. The award of the most “Social” team at the 2004 Manila 10’s illustrates the regard in which the rugby community holds the Pigs.

While the emphasis of the Pot Bellied Pigs is on enjoying a social level of rugby, there is also a very serious commitment to developing the game of rugby union in Asia. The benefits of sponsorship have permitted the Pot Bellied Pigs to undertake the first ever rugby tour to Irian Jaya and to introduce local Chinese students to the wonders of playing rugby.

The Potbellies 25th tour, saw the Pigs return to one of their favorite destinations for the 2002 Bali 10s. Bali 2002 should have been special, being their “Silver tour”, but instead it turned into a nightmare when terrorist bombs destroyed 2 nightclubs and killed 202 people of whom 27 were rugby players in that year’s tournament. The Bali Pigs were extremely fortunate, having just left a restaurant, and were walking toward the clubs when the bombs went off. Had it all happened 30 seconds later the Pigs would certainly have been added to the statistics! As it was, the Pigs did, tragically, lose two members playing with other teams that day with another seriously injured who had joined the referees at a club earlier in the evening

Today, the Pot Bellied Pigs have developed into Asia’s best-known touring side. The migrant nature of ‘ex-pats’ in Hong Kong means that they have members living in all the far-flung corners of the world, from the Ukraine to Texas and from the Orkney Islands to Tasmania. These absent Pigs do their best to attend at least one tour a year



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