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IEGS Ladies Rugby Come From Nowhere

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Mr Nigel Sharp writes:

[The weekend before last] the IEGS ladies rugby team was in Vänersborg to take part in a rugby cup. The team had been invited to take part in the Swedish Rugby Youth Championships. The other teams in our group were; Enköping Rugbyklubb, Vänersborg Rugbyklubb and Pingvin Rugby club from Trelleborg.

Before I give you the results, I should explain for those not familiar with rugby that a score in rugby (called a try) is worth 5 points so a final result of 5-0 is actually a very close game and not a five goal difference as would be the case in football, handball or ice hockey.

Our first game was against the home team VRK. I believe our girls were very nervous – not such a surprise as for many of them this was their first game of rugby ever. There were some very anxious moments but we managed to win 20-15. Our second game was against Enköping. I had heard that this would be a tough match and it was. It was however quite clear that our girls had learned a lot in the first game and played with much more confidence and managed to win 20-10.

The first two matches were played on a very soft and very muddy pitch so it was nice to move to a new pitch that still had some grass on it. We now had to face Pingvin who took the initiative and we were saved by some quite unbelievable tackling from the whole team. In the end we were able to win due to some very good passing and quick running. The final result was once again 20-10.

So after day one we were the only undefeated team and top of the table.

During day one we had help from Julia from Karlstad Rugby Club and I would like to thank Julia for joining the team.

Saturday evening was spent studying.

Early on Sunday morning...

...we heard that Julia would not be able to play so we would have to play with only one substitute.

At 9:30 we played our semi-final match against Enköping. Enköping played an entirely different game and it was only some very good defending that kept us in the game. We were able to hold out and once again our speed and passing paid off and we were able to win 15-5.

By now most of the players were carrying a few minor injuries and most were very tired but overjoyed that they were in the final.

It was time for another study session.

Pingvin had a much easier semi-final and comfortably beat VRK 50-0.

The final was one of the most intensive games I have seen for a long time with both teams playing very well. At half-time the score was still 0-0. During the second half Helene received a second knock on an already heavily taped finger and had to come off. Then Nora injured her hand but bravely played on. Next we received a big blow when Bella twisted her ankle and had to be carried off the field. Helene showed great commitment and came back on. Unfortunately we didn’t really get our defense back in order and Pingvin managed to score. This proved to be the only try of the match so we lost the match by the smallest possible margin 5-0.

I would like to congratulate the entire team for a simply brilliant performance. As the tournament committee said afterwards: “we had no idea IEGS were going to be this good”.

I was contacted by the Swedish Ladies rugby coach, who wanted to know much more about these girls “who have come from nowhere!”

I cannot think of much better praise.

I can add that it is rare to see such team spirit. I am sure that we were the best tacklers in the tournament (and I include here even the boy’s teams).

The Team:

Bella Redemo (c), Fiona McDonald, Helene Bohlin, Jenny Björksten, Kate Fahlén, Mikaela Korpysz, Minna Alge and Nora Khaled

I would like to thank Linnea Uebel who did a great job as team captain. To Oliver Sharp who has inspired so many students to start playing rugby and who has put in so much effort to organize the rugby club. To my wife Harriet who acted as team manager and sorted out all the admin things and was the team “mum”.

Finally thanks to Mr. Jones and all in Russell for letting us use their house shirts.

Truly international.
Outstanding teachers.
Safe environment.
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