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, September 09, 2011

France - where dinosaurs roam

One of the puzzles of women's rugby is why France - the country that could reasonably claim to be the birthplace of the women's game - under performs, when compared with other major nations. Overseas tours are few, and - despite being part of the FFR for two decades - those running the game seem to lack the ambition of the country they seem to envy more than any other - England.

Or maybe it is no puzzle, if the pronouncements of French men's coach Marc Lievremont are typical. In an interview yesterday's Le Parisien - Aujourd'hui en France the interviewer mentions that his sister plays the game. Lievremont replies...
She played, unfortunately! We were devastated in the family. She was wrong, obviously. Rugby has been in our home for a long time, but to do the same as her brothers, it was not appropriate for her personally. Once we get a little scratch in in women's rugby, we become all macho. Anyway, I think there are other sports for women.
I suppose the best you can say about this is that at least he is honest. However, can you imagine Martin Johnson saying anything similar? That he should think he could say such things without being slapped down by the FFR perhaps shows that his patronising attitude is by no means unique in French rugby.

Estelle Sartini, former French captain and a member of the Steering Committee of the FFR, was unimpressed - "I know that unfortunately still a lot of people who think like this." though she hopes that "the inclusion of the women's rugby at the Olympics will be one way that attitudes to legitimacy of the sport will change."

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