Winscombe to start a new women’s team

PUBLISHED: 11:57 26 July 2017 | UPDATED: 11:57 26 July 2017

Winscombe Ladies.

Winscombe Ladies.

Archant

Winscombe Rugby Club is to start a new women’s team, starting with a series of friendly matches.

A women’s rugby team is the last thing we need, Winscombe Rugby Club president Kevin Rosser was heard to say.

But there was no sarcasm in his words, he really meant it. With a team in every other division, a women’s team was the only one missing. The time had come to rectify this and a new Winscombe women’s team, strictly following the club motto of friendship through rugby, is evolving in earnest.

For the past six weeks, a growing group of girls of various ages from 18 to 55 and with a range of rugby experiences, from complete novices to previous Under-18 champion players, have been gathering to train on Thursday nights.

Their patient head coach, Matt Hoygreen, admits he is somewhat surprised at how quickly the girls are learning the game and loves the enthusiasm of the group.

“After the amazing success of the girls’ teams winning the nationals, we wanted to complete the full set of sides with a women’s team. This year it will be social with the girls playing friendlies against other clubs, then joining the leagues next year.

“This year is about teaching the ladies how to play, so I will wait until next year to really crack the whip.”

Matt’s partner Rebecca has been watching Matt and her son PJ play for a few years now and decided to give it a go, even though she had never played before. She said: “They have fun on and off the pitch and I wanted to be a part of it so I joined in and am loving it.

Each of the women in the team has their own personal motivations for joining Charlotte wanted to get fit and make friends at the same time and chose rugby after being inspired by the women’s team in the London Olympics.

“Winscombe has been so welcoming as a club and are really keen to support our team in any way they can and training is so much fun,” she said.

Suzanne escaped the clutches of her husband’s team elsewhere to join a friendly club with a growing team. “So far it’s been so much fun and I’m meeting new lifelong friends.

“I can see we are improving every week and the girls coming out have a great team spirit and are so eager to learn. I can’t wait to see us grow and be an integral part of Winscombe Rugby Club”

Danielle is an Aussie who has only relocated to Winscombe this summer, and has joined to meet people and to feel part of a new community.

“I have played touch rugby at home but not proper rugby but as an Aussie I felt it was my duty to join a rugby team here. The Winscombe girls have all been so friendly and I already feel a part of the club.

“The coaches are brilliant and have taught us so much already in such a short time. I’m not sure I’m looking forward to being tackled too much but I have a feeling the team are going to have a ball on and off the pitch.”

So girls, whatever your age and ability, if you have always watched your husbands, brothers, boyfriends or fathers play and yearned to be amongst the action, your time has come.

Training is at the Winscombe Rugby Club on Thursday nights from 8-9pm and there is an open invite to anyone keen to join. As they say around the Winscombe Club “This Girl Can”. Maybe you can too.

We are already looking forward to our first match and an inner warrior day which is being fully supported by the RFU on September 2, so if you fancy it that is a great way to get involved.

If you are interested then please give Charlotte a call or search Winscombe Ladies Rugby Team on Facebook.

Sponsors of the inaugural team are sought to help out with kit and provide general support of these awesome women. Please contact Charlotte on 07859 908667 before someone else gets their name on the girls jersey before you do.

Winscombe Rugby Club who gained promotion to Western Counties North for the first time in their history have been shortlisted for the rugby club of the year in the Crabbies National Rugby Club Awards to be held at Twickenham on August 30.

As well as the 1st XV gaining promotion, the girls’ Under-18 and 15 teams became South West champions and followed that up by becoming national champions at both age groups.

Senior training is now in full swing with the 1st and 2nd XVs meeting on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the club at 7pm and this year a new 3rd XV will be formed.

Anyone interested in joining the club, whether to play more serious rugby or a more leisurely approach, should turn up on a training night and you will be made most welcome.

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