Kuala Lumpur (7 February, 2017): Local schools vying for the coveted NJ Ryan Trophy in the MCKK Premier 7s Rugby Tournament 2017 will have to deal with a ‘new wave’ of overseas challenge in Kuala Kangsar from February 24-26.
The seventh edition of the tournament has attracted Indonesia’s SMA Durunnajah for the first time whilst 2015 winners Hong Kong Sports School, Thailand’s Vajiravudh College and Singapore-based Australian International School make a return.
However, missing from this year’s edition will be 2014 champions New Zealand’s Scots College who are unable to participate due to the tight domestic schools rugby calendar.
Three-time champions Tunku Mahkota Ismail Sports School and 2013 winners The Malay College Kuala Kangsar will lead the local field of 20 Malaysian premier schools in the three-day event.
The Bandar Penawar-based SSTMI produced a stunning performance in the 2016 final against defending champions Hong Kong Sports School before pulling off a 28-22 victory. It was SSTMI’s third title in the six-year history of the tournament, following their success in 2011 and 2012 respectively.
The MCKK Premier 7s Championship is jointly organised by The Malay College Kuala Kangsar and the Malay College Old Boys Association (MCOBA) and has the support of the Perak State Youth, Sports & Human Resource and Perak State Tourism as part of Visit Perak Year 2017 promotion program.
An Under-17 invitational event, the MCKK Premier 7s Rugby Tournament enjoys the patronage of the Sultan of Perak, DYMM Paduka Seri Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah Ibni Almarhum Sultan Azlan Muhibbuddin Shah Al-Maghfurlah.
It has also, without any doubt, been part of National Rugby Development Program (NRDP) and the MCKK Premier 7s serves as a prime example of how the game should be played and promoted amongst schools.
YM Tunku Dato' Ahmad Burhanuddin, the President of MCOBA, observed: “The objective of organising the MCKK Premier 7s is to encourage the revival of the game of rugby among participating schools and to assist in the development of the sport locally.
“Organising the MCKK Premier 7s has never been an easy task and I would like to thank the Government of Malaysia, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Youth and Sports, Ministry of Tourism and Culture and our Title sponsor Telekom Malaysia (TM) for their overwhelming support since the tournament were inaugurated in 2011.”
Tunku Dato' Ahmad Burhanuddin also thanked all other major sponsors for the support in particular UEM Group Bhd, Tenaga Nasional Bhd, Perak State Tourism, Perak State Youth, Sports & Human Resources, Ranhill, Milo, New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd, Big Tree Outdoor Sdn Bhd, Cobra, Cyberview Sdn Bhd, Handal Resources, Mentor Solutions and Resources Sdn Bhd, Teras Technology, Red Ambulances Services, Saudagar Unggul Sdn Bhd, Net2One Sdn Bhd, Global Facilities Management Bhd, KTMB (Car Park) Sdn Bhd, Zurich Insurance Malaysia, Bukit Bintang City Centre Development Sdn Bhd, Uda Holdings, Che Mokhtar & Ling Advocates and Solicitors, Selama Daya Sdn Bhd, Proton Holdings Bhd, Modenas, Tackle Asia, KPJ Healthcare Bhd, SA Kargo Sdn Bhd, Disitu Holdings, SLW Sdn Bhd and Lucozade.
Local Schools: SMK Abi (Perlis); SM Sains Pokok Sena (Kedah); The Malay College Kuala Kangsar, Sekolah Tuanku Abdul Rahman, SMK King Edward VII (Perak); SM Sains Hulu Selangor, Sekolah Berasrama Penuh Integrasi Gombak (Selangor); Victoria Institution, SM Sains Selangor (Kuala Lumpur); Sekolah Sultan Alam Shah (Putrajaya); Sekolah Dato’ Abdul Razak, SMK King George V (Negeri Sembilan); SMK Sri Mersing, Sekolah Sukan Tunku Mahkota Ismail, English College (Johor); Sekolah Berasrama Penuh Integrasi Kuantan (Pahang); SM Sains Sultan Mahmud (Terengganu); SMK Sultan Yahya Petra 1 (Kelantan); SMK Agama Sheikh Haji Othman Abdul Wahab (Sarawak) and Sabah College (Sabah).
International Schools: Australian International School (Singapore); Hong Kong Sports School; SMA Durunnajah (Indonesia) and Vajiravudh College (Thailand).