Just a couple of months ago, a group of 6 ladies met one Tuesday evening to start TAG rugby training with a view to getting fit, having fun and playing some rugby! The evening could have been described as a bundle of dropped balls, forward passes and deep breathing, but the laughter was a good indicator that the girls enjoyed it and couldn’t wait for more.
Forming part of Camp Hill WRFC's involvement in the RFU's Go Play Rugby campaign as the initiative was advertised, word spread and the group grew to an incredible 20 recruits. Together with the coaching skills of Camp Hill's 1st XV players, Becci Lewis, Lucy Pollard and Jo Kilby - they turned a group of enthusiastic novices in to two teams of competitive go get-ers!
As the skills progressed, so did the understanding and the speed, shouts of ‘pop left’, ‘off side’ and ‘where’s my tag?’ soon replacing “what’s for dinner, Mum?” The date of the match was set and with just weeks to go the aptly named WAGS and TAGS were divided into two teams, and the healthy rivalry began!
Sunday 7th October saw the exciting finale to the ladies Inaugural Camp Hill Tag Rugby match. A super crowd gathered to watch the teams battle it out against each other in a nail biting match that combined passion and newly found skills. Some dropped catches and hasty passes allowed the White team to make the most of the errors and steam through to score some great trys whilst the Blue team were creative and found the gaps in defence to apply pressure to level.
As the match entered the second half the ladylike niceties disappeared, replaced instead by "cavewoman" at best! The adrenalin ran high alongside sheer determination and the desire to win. Both teams increased their effort and with just one minute to go the Blue team scored the winning try. Final score 8-7! Brilliant!
Team Manager, Annie Sheppard: “It really was an excellent day and all the girls should be very proud of their achievement. Not only have we improved our fitness and had fun, but we have also raised some money for the club. Both teams would like to thank friends and family for their support and encouragement."
“It was great to see such a good crowd and also get such positive feedback” said Jo Taylor, White team Captain.
Ben Waterhouse, RFU Rugby Development Officer, Birmingham & Worcestershire compliments: "The North Midlands Go Play Rugby Campaign Team are delighted that Camp Hill Ladies have been involved in the scheme. It is great to see local clubs really getting behind the Go Play Rugby initiative and benefiting from an influx of new and returning players which has no doubt been helped by the success of the England team at the Rugby World Cup".
Camps' Mom's/Social TAG team plan on continuing their training throughout the winter as they have now thrown the gauntlet down…and are preparing to face their male counter-parts: "The Dad's" on December 16th. For more information or if you'd like to get involved (Moms or Dads? Or any girls or women who want to play social rugby?) please contact Annie on 07843 281332 / email@example.com or go to www.chrfc.co.uk (ladies section) for more information.
Wins also for Surrey Storm, Saracens Mavericks and team bath
photo Dan Vernon
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level the playing field in terms of gender