Updated: Mar 21, 2018
Last weekend the Boon Rockstar Cup (BRC) celebrated its second year of existence. Players from all across the APAC region flew/jeepney’d into the Clark International Sports Complex to pit themselves against one another for the title.
Total score: 8/10
BRC is a great tournament for teams looking to challenge themselves against some of the best opposition from around the APAC region. The facilities are great, even if the location and fields leave a little to be desired. As an aside, this would be a perfect level for a warm up tournament for U24 teams or international clubs looking to push themselves ahead of a WUCC or AOUGCC.
The Clark International Sports Complex is an unreal, all-in-one location for a tournament
The villas next to the fields are simple but clean and have AC which is a godsend
The Philippines is extremely cheap
Quality of play is high
Clark is somewhat difficult to get to as an international player
The fields could use some work
Quality of play: Intermediate/Advanced
There are a lot of factors to consider when attending an international tournament, but quality of play is definitely up the top of that list. BRC had 12 teams in attendance this year, most of which were of an intermediate level, with a few advanced level teams. Naturally there were a lot of local teams in attendance, which was awesome for us Aussies looking to try and adapt to a different style of play. The Philippines, like a lot of SE Asia, play with a speed and intensity that is matched by very few other countries around the world. They are all extremely fit, apparently from practicing and playing Ultimate every day of the week (so I heard). When you combine this with the heat, it proves a great test of stamina and endurance for any team in attendance.
Clark is an interesting city, currently being built up to be a major sporting hub for the country. It’s only about 100km from Manila, but with the local traffic congestion this trip takes about 2-3hrs, longer during peak times. There are flights into Clark Airport, but they are at awkward times and often involve a layover. The tournament thankfully organised transport for our whole team (and other international players) from Manila Airport to the fields. Be sure to allow plenty of time on the return trip as it’s not fun sitting in traffic stressing about making your flight.
Every morning I’d wake up in my air conditioned room, yawn, stretch, and open my windows to say hi to other players walking to the fields about 50m away, then put some pants on, heaven.
The Villas at Clark literally overlook the fields, so it’s like camping, but you actually enjoy yourself. All the rooms had air con, comfy beds, a fridge and two bathrooms/showers. There is a pool in the complex, so you and your team mates can unwind after a hard days play, or perhaps during a bye.
The fields were passable, but not great. The ground is pretty hard, dusty and unforgiving. The good news is that the Clark complex is undergoing a big upgrade in the next few years, so the quality of grass should improve.
It was hot in Clark, so water and hydration was a major priority for teams. While you were heavily discouraged from drinking the tap water, there was always filtered water available at the fields throughout the day. I was a little suspicious at first but no-one got sick, so I stand corrected. There was also always ice next to the water which I didn’t try my luck on, but I’m sure would have been fine.
There was breakfast/lunch provided for teams as well as an assortment of food stalls during the day and into the evening. Every Aussie has heard, or experienced horror stories of getting sick from food in the Philippines, and while it’s not really in the TD's control, it must be mentioned. However, no-one on my team experienced anything more serious than a runny poop during our stay. I’m going to assume this was down the to quality controlling of the tournament team and their chosen food providers.
Free beer and rum all night. Need I elaborate?
The party was at the fields, in an outside areas just next to the accomodation. There were loud speakers and a decent DJ who played accessible upbeat dance music. No Macarena, thank god. The dance floor was a fun, sweaty affair, as all good dance floors should be. The music finished at midnight, but this was more than enough party time for many of our exhausted team.