This year’s Ipes Siam Cup took place on Saturday 6 May at Jersey Rugby Football Club. Jersey were once again victorious winning a closely fought game ending Jersey 20 - Guernsey 18.
With a 2,000+ crowd braving the drizzly weather, this year's Ipes Siam Cup proved to once again be a thoroughly successful event and a fantastic day for one of the Channel Islands major sporting events. The annual rugby union competition is held between the Channel Island clubs of Jersey RFC and Guernsey RFC and has been contested annually since 1920, with each island hosting it every other year.
This year’s event saw Guernsey's Ladies team play a dominating game, taking home the trophy with a score of 43-0 their sixth consecutive Siam success. Jersey claimed the Fallaize Cup second team encounter in some style, winning 43-12. The Nash Cup for the Veteran's teams was won for a second consecutive year by Guernsey, with a score of 19-10.
The highly anticipated Siam Cup match saw both teams entering into the game on the back of their highest ever finishes in the English rugby pyramid, with Guernsey finishing fifth in National Three London and Jersey only just missing out on the Championship play-offs. Guernsey created enough openings to feel they could have won their first Siam this decade, but Jersey, with just three first team pros in their line up, clinched another win in steady rain at their home pitch in St. Peter. The final score was Jersey 20 - Guernsey 18, in the closest Siam Cup since 2008. Man of the match was presented by Ipes Jersey Director, Jonathon Buesnel. The Titles were awarded to Joel Dudley as Jersey’s man of the match, and Kenny Hellier as Guernsey’s man of the match.
As of 2016, Jersey had been the more successful island in the Ipes Siam Cup, with 57 wins to Guernsey’s 15. This is the second year that a restriction on player selection in the Ipes Siam Cup has been implemented. Following Jersey's rise through the English leagues to Level 2 and earning ‘professional’ status, it was argued that changes to player selection should be enforced to enable a fairer competition. In 2016, it was declared that Jersey could only select players for the Siam Cup if they had been on the island for three years, Guernsey, playing in a league at Level 5, would be unaffected by this change.
This is the 4th year Ipes has sponsored the Ipes Siam Cup as part of a four year pan island deal. The involvement with the competition has been the culmination of the company’s investment in rugby locally. The principles of rugby with its core values of respect, team work, discipline and sportsmanship mirror our own professional values within Ipes.