The ‘Indonesian Rugby Hall of Fame’ was set up in 2008 to recognise those who gave a lot of time to Rugby in Indonesia prior to the foundation of the Union on May 10, 2004. The history of Rugby in Indonesia dates back to the early 1900’s and the Game is known to have prospered in Jakarta during the roaring 1920’s and 30’s. However due to the outbreak of World War Two and the Japanese invasion of 1942, which was then followed after the war by the period of Indonesian Independence the Game ceased to exist in this country until it was reintroduced by a bunch of expatriates in the early 1970’s. Among those gentleman was Brian ‘Haystack’ Huntley.
Prior to 2013, the following gentleman have been recognised as Members of the ‘Indonesian Rugby Hall of Fame’:
2008 – Gordon Benton, Sugiman Layanto, Paul Hoban (deceased), Alistair Speirs, David
2010 – John Cordony (deceased)
2012 – Scott Lysaght, Merv Popadynec, Ben Roberts, Nathan Swain, Robert Thwaites, Jamie Wellington (ISCI Rugby Club Members who were killed in the 2002 Bali Bombings)
The 2013 inductee Brian ‘Haystick’ Huntley who hails from the days when “sex was safe and playing rugby was dangerous”. Brian was instrumental in setting up Jakarta Rugby in the early 1970’s and has in recent times has done a wonderful job in communicating with the Jakarta Rugby Old Boys Rugby Community, wherever they may be located throughout the world. Brian these days lives in Perth, WA, Australia and was lucky enough to be in Jakarta at the ‘2013 Indonesian Rugby Charity Lunch’ to receive his award from former Wallaby, Ben Darwin (centre) and PRUI Chairman, Yudha Ramon (right).
For more information on Rugby having been played in Indonesia in the early 1900’s please take a look at this link which shows an article that was researched earlier this year:http://indonesiarugbyunion.pitchero.com/news/indonesian-rugby-flashback-in-time-2836/
Another interesting fact – the Indonesian Rugby Union through the ISCI Jakarta Rugby Club as it was known in those days was one of the foundation members of the now world famous Hong Kong Rugby Sevens in 1976. Indonesia was represented at the first eleven Hong Kong Sevens Tournaments, before the level of the tournament stretched beyond being a ‘club’ tournament to a truly international tournament.