After finishing third in the Asian Club Championship (ACC) in August, the Philippine Vipers touch football team will test their mettle anew in the 2016 Shanghai International Touch Tournament on October 22 in Shanghai, China.
Formed earlier this year, the Vipers made their debut in the 2016 ACC.
“The games played in Cambodia represented the first international game of touch for many of the team members so it was remarkable that we came away with the results we did,” Vipers team captain Jaime Urquijo said on Friday.
“The team gelled more and more as the tournament progressed and it was a fantastic learning opportunity for the young team” added Urquijo.
The Philippine Vipers will see action in the mixed open division against 14 other teams including SCAU, T8 – Hong Kong, Hong Kong Touch Team, Southerners Sports Clubs, Shanghai Dragons Black, Shanghai Dragons Silver, Shanghai Dragons, Zion, Xianlin Warriors Juniors, Suzhou Dragons 1, Suzhou Dragons 2, The Untouchable, YK Pao School, and YCIS Gubei.
“Competing in international tournaments is vital for the development of our players,” team manager Bianca Arco told The Manila Times.
According to Arco, it is the goal of Federation of Touch Football Pilipinas (FTFP) to have as many players participate in international tournaments in order to build a pool for the next world cup in 2019, in Malaysia.
The Shanghai International Touch Tournament has been staged annually since 2004 and is an international meet with participating teams coming from Asia and New Zealand.
The FTFP is the national sports association of touch football in the Philippines.
It is a member nation of the Federation of International Touch, the international body governing the sport.
JEAN RUSSEL V. DAVID