USRC Tigers RFC
|Full name||USRC Tigers Rugby Football Club|
|Founded||1970s as Kai Tak Mini RFC|
|Location||King's Park, Kowloon|
|Ground(s)||King's Park Sports Ground, 3,000 capacity|
|League(s)||HKRFU Premiership, Hong Kong Mini-Rugby Football Union, Colts-Rugby Club League|
|2009–10||Division One/Pool A|
USRC Tigers (三軍會猛虎欖球會) is a rugby football club based in King's Park, Hong Kong. It arose from the merger between Kai Tak Tigers and DeA Flamingo Rugby Football Club in 1990 to become "DeA Tigers". In 2014, DeA Tigers associated with the United Services Recreation Club (USRC) to become "USRC Tigers".
Kai Tak Mini Rugby Club, a precursor to the present-day club, was created in the late 1970s to cater for mini rugby. It derived its name from its location at the sports ground at Kai Tak. However, as the Kai Tak Airport expanded, the club was relocated first to Blackdown Barracks where the British military were stationed, and then successively to Shek Kip Mei and finally King's Park, where it shared the grounds with 'Tigers Rugby Club' of the British Armed Forces. After the British departed in 1997, Kai Tak Minis adopted the word 'Tigers' into their name and became the Kai Tak Tigers Mini Rugby Club until the merger with DeA.
The 'seniors' part of the club was formed in 1988 to pursue a Rugby Development Programme under the auspices of the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme, and was thus named 'DeA'. This group of local male and female P.E. teachers joined with the scheme participants to enter the first ever touch rugby training and tournament. In 1990, 'DeA Flamingo Rugby Football Club' was created to cater for older rugby players in need of a senior club. Over time, the 'Flamingo' in the name was dropped.
In September 2002, upon its merger with Kai Tak, creating only the second club to cater for rugby at all levels, the club henceforth become 'DeA Tigers Rugby Football Club'. At the club's general meeting in 2014, members approved an association with the United Services Recreation Club (USRC) and a name change to USRC Tigers RFC.
Tigers' "home ground" at King's Park is shared with other members of the King's Park Sports Association – sporting clubs that play a range of sports such as football, baseball. The actual tenant is the Hong Kong Rugby Football Union, which signed the underlying seven-year lease with the Hong Kong Government for the grounds, and invested in laying artificial turf on all pitches and installing floodlighting.
in bold = players internationals
Note: Flags indicate national union as has been defined under WR eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-WR nationality.
- Mark Reddish – current Wellington Rugby Football Union and Hurricanes (rugby union) player.
- Adam Hill – current Wellington Rugby Football Union and Hurricanes (rugby union) player.
- Dane Maraki – current Manly RUFC player.
- Ivan Zenovic – Hong Kong international.
- Charles Armstrong – Ireland U18 international, former Nottingham R.F.C. player.
- Marc Siddons – former Lazio Roma Rugby player.
- Donald Blake – former Nottingham R.F.C. player.
- Sam Wood – former Nottingham R.F.C. player.
- Robert Cleary – former Nottingham R.F.C. and Northampton Old Scouts RFC player.
- Rowan Varty – Hong Kong international, former Toyota Shokki Shuttles player, also the first Hong Kong player to represent the Barbarians.
Membership of the mini/youth rugby club is relatively open, and is achieved through the players themselves; registration takes place at the start of each season in late August/early September. Costs are kept to a minimum by parents' active involvement in the running of the club, such as taking on the role as coaches or in other capacities, and/or join the Section or General Committees that administer the club.
DeA Tigers play in the HKRFU Premiership, an inter-club league which begins in early September and ends in April. There are several off-season on-day leagues usually played throughout the rest of March and April. Training sessions are generally held every Sunday throughout the season. The mini-rugby section (U5s–U10s) train in the morning, while the older Minis and Colts section teams (U14s–U18s) train later on in the day. Summer training takes place on Tuesday evenings.
During the main season, the inter-club league is held where the Colts teams play the other Division One clubs such as Hong Kong Football Club (HKFC) and Valley Fort. However, large clubs often field a separate roster of a "second team" to play weaker opposition sides in one-day tournaments. It is rare for a club team to field a second team to compete in a weaker division in the inter-club league.
The club is divided into three main sporting divisions: Senior, Youth, and Mini; each division has its own committee, and sections for girls/women's rugby. The club is run by a General Committee consisting of six Elected Members and three ex officio members, who are the chairmen of each of the Seniors Colts and Minis, and a number of co-opted members. It also has activities on a social level for adults.
The DeA 1st, 2nd and 3rd XV all reached the finals in 2010/2011 season.
The Colts are youth section, for children aged between 12 and 18
The Minis cater for children from the age of 5 up to the age of 11
As of August 2014, Tigers RFC is associated with the United Services Recreation Club.
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