Willow and Gabs' Rugby Championship Dream Team

The Rugby Championship has come to a close with the All Blacks clinching another classy title win. We have assembled our dream team squad of the championship, the best of the best, the creme de la creme of the southern hemisphere rugby elite. Forget northern hemisphere, this is where the big boys play. Sekope Kepu (Prop, Australia) - Willow After Kepu ran in the 60 metre try to the huge embarrassment of the Chiefs, I thought Sekope had peaked but his performance in this Rugby Championship has proved that he’s only getting better. Kepu’s 80 cap experience has been evident in the scrum as Sekope has dominated his opposition easily with his not insubstantial 125kg frame. He’s also been putting

My Favourite Rugby Guide

Mansplaining is one of my favourite terms to have blessed 21st century culture: a uniquely succinct and catchy way to characterise the frustratingly condescending explanations made by some men to women. For many women it’s an unfortunate reality to happen across; for female rugby players and supporters, it’s an inescapable truism of nearly every day. Now Mansplaining – as convenient a term as it is – is at points too broad and unfair a term to be bandied about. Indeed, this must not be taken as a misandristic rant aimed at dismantling the male sex and discouraging their sometimes-genuine attempts to be helpful. Instead, I want to highlight the frequent underestimation of women in certain are

From Gymnastics to Rugby: A Different Kind of Leap

When people ask me if I do any sport and I respond with ‘rugby’, they often look surprised. When I then tell them I’m an ex-gymnast, they proceed to look even more confused. ‘But, why rugby?’ I am often met with. Well, when I came to University I was in the classic position of wanting to try something new. As in, really new. Really different. So rugby it was. However, as I begin my second year with UYWRUFC, the difference no longer seems quite so stark. The gym full of empowering women now finds itself on a pitch. The bruises from falling off a beam one too many times are now replaced with purple splodges from one too many tackles. Both gymnastics and rugby require an incredible level of res

Ban Rugby Tackling in Schools?

Researchers from Newcastle University believe banning tackling in school rugby will reduce the risks of concussion and head and neck injuries in young men and women. However, as a keen school and now university player, I believe introducing rugby tackling techniques at an early age will teach youngsters how to properly conduct a tackle and how to present the rugby ball in order to prevent injury in a ruck. Having been introduced to mixed gender ‘touch rugby’ in year 6, it not only removed elements of the ‘fear factor’ that latecomers to the sport experience, it also gently introduced me to the physical contact nature of the game. The researchers argue that a United Nations convention outline

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