After a few weeks of light women’s rugby news, we’re back in earnest. We start with Six Nations warmup matches between Ireland and Wales as well as Spain hosting Scotland. We take a look at Round 11 of Tyrrells Premier, Round 8 of Energia All-Ireland League, and Rugby Africa’s XVs Championship.
In 7s we talk about South Africa and their continued lack of support, rugby in Lebanon, an update from PNG and Jamaica.
Wales and Ireland are both in camp preparing for a Six Nations warmup on January 19. In their last meeting Wales edged Ireland 15-13 and this matchup is expected to be close again.
There has been a small cloud over the Wales squad as rumors have been flying around about head coach Rowland Phillips. After the autumn matches Phillips took a break and has been mysteriously absent.
“Former back-rower Phillips’ assistant Gareth Wyatt and WRU staff coaches Chris Horsman and Geraint Lewis took charge for the clashes with Spain, Ireland, Scotland, Crawshays and the Barbarians.
Wales went down to Spain and the Barbarians with arguably their two best players, world-rated No.8 Sioned Harries and captain Carys Phillips, the daughter of Rowland Phillips, falling out of favour.
The WRU has never given a detailed explanation for the absence of Rowland Phillips, who is still on its pay-roll, other than to say he was on a break while he has declined to comment.
It’s uncertain whether he will return as women’s head coach.”
Also on January 19, Spain will host Scotland in Almeria at the Juan Rojas Stadium. The pressure is on Spain as they not only need a win but would rather like to score as many points as possible. This is an effort to help their World Rugby rankings and continue their preparation for the Rugby Europe Championship.
Head Coach Philip Doyle said:
“I am excited to get to Spain and get this busy year underway. We had a camp at the start of January, which was a very physical, tough camp for the players. They were all worked extremely hard and all players were able to keep their work rate up and really push themselves.
The French Elite 1 League is on break until March 22 until after the Six Nations. Montpellier Rugby Club and Stade Toulousain are in the lead but will that remain after the break?
Round 11 of Tyrrells Premeir sees the Harlequins maintain their top spot on the table followed by Saracens and Loughborough. This upcoming week marks the last round of matches before the break for the Six Nations.
In Round 8 of the Energia Women’s All-Ireland League Malone recorded their first win against Galwegians and they moved off the bottom of the table. Bohemian still sits atop the table and is chased by Railway and Old Belvedere.
While most leagues are taking a break for the Six Nations, Ireland is only taking a few weeks off.
The "Gold Cup" is presumably the @RugbyAfrique XVs championship. The inclusion of Zimbabwe this year makes more sense that Madagascar last year - though the qualification process remain opaque. https://t.co/4rsJnT6JM4— Scrumqueens - Women’s Rugby (@ScrumQueens) January 10, 2020
These dates appear to be park of Rugby Africa’s XVs Championship but labeled as the Gold Cup. The qualification process appears to be undetermined but we’re hoping for more details as we get closer to the summer.
New Zealand Rugby's decision to give yet another prize to an All Black might not seem much, but it feels indicative of an organisation who still have a bit to learn about respecting women. https://t.co/ddOEN8Xkrx— Your Scrumhalf Connection - Women's Rugby (@yscrugby) January 7, 2020
Awards continue to be a sore subject for us as they continually are awareded unfairly and with gender bias. New Zealand’s most recent blunder appears to be front and center. Our favorite quote from the article comes in the last line:
New Zealand Rugby’s decision to give yet another prize to an All Black might not seem much, but it feels indicative of an organisation who still have a bit to learn about respecting women.
Her father worked as a handyman, and her mother was an anganwadi worker. “My father put me ahead of others and helped me in every way he could. I would tell coaches to lend me spikes, I would prove I deserved them by winning,” #SweetyKumari @ScrumQueenshttps://t.co/lQ0XXYXSvH— Ketan (@ketan72) January 5, 2020
Sweety Kumari was recently named ‘International young Player of the Year’ by Scrum Queens and she has been “flying a little above ground” ever since. This 19-year-old has been nicknamed “Scoring Machine” by her teammates as she is quite quick and leaves defenders in her dust.
A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between Indian Rugby Football Union (IRFU) and Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) to set up Rugby High-Performance Centre in Bhubaneswar. https://t.co/GOTw3e9jVt pic.twitter.com/SyB8zylBWH— Your Scrumhalf Connection - Women's Rugby (@yscrugby) January 5, 2020
A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between Indian Rugby Football Union (IRFU) and Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) to set up Rugby High-Performance Centre in Bhubaneswar.
FlorRugby lists their collegiate teams of the year, honoring Lindenwood University.
They have won the last two 15’s national championships, the last three USA Rugby 7s championships, and the past two CRC 7s championships.
In 2019, they pulled off their second consecutive Triple Crown (winning 15s national championship, USAR 7s Championship, and CRC 7s Championship).
Even though they lost 40-0 against New Zealand in their opening match of Cape Town 7s, Simnikiwe Xabanisa of City Press is arguing that the South African women deserve more support.
They are constantly compared to the men’s side and their winning ways but barely receive a quarter of the support including funding and administrators show little interest in women playing the game.
The SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee has forbidden them from qualifying for the Olympics through the World Rugby’s way, which is winning the African qualifiers.
They won the tournament a couple of months ago but had to give the spot to second-placed Kenya because the Olympic body insists on their qualifying through the World Sevens Series, the majority events which they can’t attend due to the aforementioned money issue.
Two women’s sevens rugby teams play rugby in Lebanon.
- Beirut Aconites
- Jamhour Black Lions(formerly Blue Stars)
Lebanon Rugby “hopes to build on these teams and the Junior Rugby over the next year”.
The Post-Courier gives an update on women’s 7s and XVs in Papua New Guinea. They are taking pride in their performances at Oceania 7s and the recent Olympic Qualifiers. On the XVs side in the Oceania Championships PNG didn’t fair as well but they now have seen their competition up close.
@Jamaica_Rugby Women’s 7’s working hard. @tigerrugby @WorldRugby7s @RugbyWrapUp @Rugby7sMagazine @djcoil @espnscrum @PaulHolmes_10 @RugbyAmericasN @EmilieBydwell pic.twitter.com/RfwoSF2hew— Stephen Lewis (@lizardrugby) January 6, 2020
Jamaica 7s shares a quick video about their women’s trials as they look to recruit new players for their national team.
French women playing rugby in the 1960s…fascinating!
After the recent Wasps Ladies vs Gloucester-Hartpury thriller, The Women’s Rugby Show caught up with departing Cherries Head Coach, Susie Appleby, to discuss her legacy at Gloucester, her aims for her new club/role and more…
The Inside Women’s Rugby Podcast spoke with Elena R. Hennig about jet setting all over the world to play rugby in some amazing places.
A record number of American coaches benefitted from the once-in-a-lifetime Premiership Rugby Scholarships experience in 2019 and the program is returning and promises to be bigger and better.
Premiership Rugby will host their next cohort of coaches from the US from 19-26 April 2020, in England. To be in with a chance of winning, you will need to submit a video outlining who you currently coach and how the experience will positively impact your coach delivery on returning home. Applications close 26 January.
To apply please submit your video HERE.
This girl can and why we should all listen - Eleanor Wilkinson has been recognised for the enormous contribution she’s made to girls’ rugby. Rugby Coach Weekly caught up with the busy college student who’s a player, coach and referee, and still only 16. https://t.co/zusuV8qxao pic.twitter.com/pe0Uo2z6Vi— Your Scrumhalf Connection - Women's Rugby (@yscrugby) January 9, 2020
Eleanor Wilkinson has been recognized by England for her enormous contribution she’s made to girls’ rugby. Rugby Coach Weekly caught up with the busy college student who’s a player, coach and referee, and still only 16.
In April 2019, 26 brave challengers took on the adventure of a lifetime as they climbed Mount Everest to set two Guinness World Records for the highest games of rugby ever played, raising money for charity Wooden Spoon in the process.