It is 7522 kilometres from Sydney’s south west to Thailand. All worth it though when you are going to represent your country for the first time. In a historic clash, Thailand will host the Philippines on the 20th of October and Campbelltown’s Will Dreves will be there.
Dreves and his little brother, Jay, will run out for the Philippines in Pattaya representing their mothers side of the family.
The side will leave Sydney on the 14th of October for promotional work in both the Philippines and in Thailand before the main game on the 20th.
An electrician by trade, Dreves has been a star in the local Group 6 competition for the Campbelltown Eagles and has helped the club dominate this season. His performances were rewarded with selection in the Group 6 representative side.
You have a feeling though that representing the Philippines means a little more.
“I heard about it when I looked at results for the Cabramatta International Nines. They played in it too and found out the coach of Camden [Rams] is the assistant coach, so he’d seen me play the last few years” Dreves said.
The former St Gregory’s College student will not only be joined by his brother but an impressive cast of National Rugby League stars.
“Matt Srama, Kevin Gordon and Andrew Everingham are all playing in it” Dreves added.
Who ever said rugby league wasn’t an international game?
The opportunity these games provide and the places these men will get to see means everything.
Despite The Philippines National Rugby League being in its infancy, moves are being made to grow the game in Asia. In fact, the International Nines tournament that Dreves speaks of is the very first competition the Philippines had competed in.
PNRL’s first board meeting only happened in Sydney of January this year too. They’re baby steps for now, but you cant make history without starting something.
How many of you can say you’ve played footy in Pattaya?
Who can say they’ve played alongside Kevin Gordon, Matt Srama and Andrew Everingham?
With family no doubt watching on, Will Dreves and his brother Jay will run out for the Philippines in their historic first match against Thailand.
Just proves what kind of magical doors this great game can open.