Formed 2004 ... Herts 7s U14 Runners-up 2005 ... North Herts U14 team, Herts Youth Games 2005 runners-up (coached by Letchworth)... Herts Superteams U14 Runners-up 2005 ... Herts SuperTeams "Fairplay" winners 2006 ... Rochford 10s U17 Champions 2006 ... East Midlands 10s U17 Runners-up 2007 ... East Midlands 10s U17 "Fairplay" winners 2007 ... National 10s U17 5th place and "Fairplay" winners 2007 ... Herts 7s U17 Plate runners-up 2007 ... National 7s U17 Plate winners 2007 ... RFU "President's XV" Award winners 2007 ... Herts Superteams winners 2007 ... Midlands 10s U18 Runners-up 2008 ... National 10s U18 4th place 2008 ... North Herts U11 team, Herts Youth Games 2008 runners-up (coached by Letchworth girls) ... London and SE 7s U18 Plate runners-up 2008 ... Herts 7s U18s runners-up 2008 ... National 7s U18s quarter-finalists 2008 ... Gloucester City 10s U18 Bowl runner-up (6th) 2009 ... Worthing 10s U18 Plate runner-up 2009 ... National 7s U18 Plate winners 2009... Worthing 10s U15 Plate winners 2010... Worthing 10s U18 Shield winners 2010... Herts 7s U15 and U18 Bowl runners-up 2010... National 7s U18 Plate runners-up 2010...

Friday, July 13, 2007

You too could be an international...

If you were trully desparate to play international rugby, where would you stand the greatest chance of pulling on a national shirt?

Strangely enough it isn't Ireland after all (though their playing record does appear to be everything that I hear Sasha claimed it was) in fact somewhere rather more pleasent, climate-wise - and as its also a British colony language would not be a problem. So where do you go if you are hankering to be called an "international"?

May I recommend the Cayman Islands. These dots on the map are in the western Atlantic, and better known for being a tax haven. But they do play rugby there. And women's rugby too. And they play internationals. Later this year they will be staging the third Caribbean Women's Rugby Championship there, building on their first international back in 2004 when they lost 15-3 to Jamaica.

So why is this a good place to get a game? Because their coach mentioned in passing, after the Jamaican game, that one small challenge he faces is that he had a total of 17 players to select his team from. Yes - 17... ever so slightly fewer than England! So if you're anywhere near Grand Cayman between the 18th and 26th August drop by the Cayman Island RFU's offices in George Town. And don't forget your boots.

Another country worth packing your boots if you are visiting may be Austria. Okay slightly more rugby there, but there is a glorious tale here (in English) about their national team going to play Hungary for a 10s game... in a 9 seat mini-bus... getting stuck in a traffic jam and pracising line-outs to pass the time... borrowing players when they got there... finding they didn't have enough shirts... plus some dodgy after-match entertainments (what, exactly, is a "popo"?). Yes - if you happened to be around its odds on that you too would have been singing the Austrian National Anthem that day - and having a damn good time by the sounds of it - especially as its also apparent that their age rules are ever so slightly more relaxed than those of the RFUW.

All this and more it is possible to discover when the rain pours down on a summer Sunday and you discover that no-one - but no-one - has ever bothered to record any information about women's international rugby. And if you are the mind set which says "well, in that case I will" (see here) you quickly find yourself chasing up leads about possible games in unexpected outposts, attempting to decipher websites in a wide range of languages, and discovering all sorts of strangely fascinating stories about female rugby daring do in the farthest corners of the world. Indeed it can get mildly obsessive... Still - it passes the time until the rain stops...

BTW - the Austrians do a neat line in posters and leaflets - curiously quite a lot of it in English.

1 comment:

  1. lots of stuff in english because their team manager (renee) is canadian. to play for austria you have to have at least some austrian relatives, like our miris' great-grandmother was austrian and so she got the chance to play...

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