Rucking hell, it’s your Women’s Rugby Varsity squad
Smashing pints and the Poly since 1983
With the London Varsity Series currently standing at a 9-7 to UCL, we’re in for one hell of a ride come the finale on Friday 17th of March. Nine-times Varsity champions and one of the founding teams of the WRFU, UCLUWRFC are a squad with a long and proud history, and they’re ready to fight to reclaim the Women’s Rugby Varsity title. A team with both former-international players and wide-eyed freshers, the Friday night fixture promises to be a dramatic one as they square up to the Goliath that is KCLWRFC.
In case this hasn’t convinced you to come watch, check out their brilliant promo video. Tickets for an Athletics and Rugby triple header can be bought here and the lovely ladies will be kicking off at 5:30.
1 – Camille Bizard, MSc Chemical Engineering
One of UCLUWRFC’s more docile players off the pitch, once Camille gets given the ball she becomes the one of the most aggressive carrier you’ll ever lay eyes on. Despite playing at Loosehead, our favourite fighting Frenchman seems to think she’s Yoann Huget and steps everyone who comes near her. Her astonishing agility and crash-ball skill almost makes up for her total lack of Loop appearances.
Likes: rogue lines, Les Blues, designing distillation columns
Dislikes: the recent outcomes of Le Crunch, high tackles
2 – Mo Fox, 2nd year, Geography
Will Mo Bear ever make it to Varsity? KCL should hope not as Foxy has an uncanny knack for turning over scrums, even when the odds seem to be stacked against her. When she’s not either lost on a Cornish beach or wading into rucks, Mo can be found either fantasising about the moment she gets to abandon the WRFC for the wilds of Canada or insisting that peanut butter is still the best source of protein.
Likes: colouring in, crushing watermelons
Dislikes: Devon, meat, being benched
3 – Tilly Chapman, 1st year, Bioprocessing of New Medicines
The unyielding cornerstone of the UCLUWRFC front row, Tilly is a former Rugby League player who’s taken the attacking side of everyone’s least favourite football code and married it with the sheer brutality of Rugby Union. Scoring all of the team’s forward tries this season she’s also one to be watched when she’s in the KCL 22. Aside from bashing through the opposition every Wednesday and studying an incredibly difficult-sounding degree, Tilly somehow also finds the time to attend every Sports Night and look good in sweaty club photos.
Likes: being practically married, taking mid-match breaks
Dislikes: sarcastic opposition front rows
4 – Marjolein Heemskerk, 1st year, Classical Archaeology
Legend has it that Marj can only receive transfusions from Carlsberg as too much blood might poison her alcohol system. Possibly the only person ever to have been barred from the Night Tube, she now prefers to channel her passions on the pitch by slaughtering anyone who comes near her with a ball. The only thing she can smash faster than a pint is a rugby player.
Likes: dirty kit, being a fresher, cheese
Dislikes: poor sportsnight attendence, roast chicken crisps
5 – Mallory Bernstein, MSc African Studies with Health
Joining us from the US by way of South Africa, Mall has likely forgotten more about rugby than anyone will ever know. The elder stateswoman of the club, when she can be dragged from her degree Mall is always the first port of call for pre-match encouragement and cute dog stories.
Likes: incredibly complex forward plays, Joss Whedon
Dislikes: Southern Hemisphere scrummaging
6 – Fay Morris, 2nd year, Anthropology
Both the tallest and fastest blindside flanker you’ll ever meet, Fay has decided to entirely sack off the UK next year to hone her rugby skills in New Zealand – and also maybe do her degree alongside that. Staying true to her name, Faz Moz is also an expert Morris dancer and can often be found attempting to teach the girls makeshift jigs on the way back from Twickenham.
Likes: Fijian rugby, squeeze ball, her immaculate braids
Dislikes: being repeatedly told off for squeeze ball
7 – Emili Stevenson, 3rd year, SSEES History
On a holiday from hooker after taking it upon herself to break her neck, Stevenson has switched from gamekeeper to ruthless poacher at the breakdown. Our resident squatting Slav enjoys smashing rucks more than she enjoys having a functioning brain, would probably play in her ratty Docs if given half a chance, and attributes her poor taste and rogue decision making to her ongoing head injuries.
Likes: obscure 90s shoegaze bands, using her head as a battering ram, pretty-boy wingers
Dislikes: self preservation, Thursday mornings, pretty-boy wingers
8 – Kathryn Cumming, 3rd year, Geology
Once upon a time Kat was a winger, then she got bored of constantly shouting for the ball and decided to remedy this by moving to a position where she could constantly crash it up the field. 2016’s most improved player, Kat’s hobbies include showing off her impressive quads and making enormous hits across the open field against unsuspecting backs.
Likes: rocks, her boyfriend’s stash, early morning sprint training
Dislikes: the science library, not getting in her daily picturesque insta post
9 – Eva Attubato, 2nd year, Medicine
Describing a scrum-half as a terrier will always be clichéd, however Eva embodies the scrappy, fighting spirit that most 9s would kill for. Some have questioned whether or not she’s a forward trapped in the body of a half-back considering her tendency to chase down back row players and accidentally end up in mauls. Two-Pint-Eva is yet another player never to have made a sports night appearance (at least with the WRFC) possibly owing to that exact nickname.
Likes: Ouzo, fighting giant women, shouting at forwards
Dislikes: Italy’s 6 Nations record, getting up for matches
10 – Kate Bovey, 2nd year, History
Bovey has made a promise to remain on the pitch for a full 80 minutes this year, which would beat her previous record of 75. One of UCLUWRFC’s fittest players, rumour has it KB has never broken a sweat before half time and considers ascending Mont Ventoux a gentle Sunday ride. Kate also moonlights as an amateur football pundit, often venting on twitter over her beloved Arsenal’s performance this season.
Likes: cycling, football, sports which aren’t rugby
Dislikes: getting subbed off, certain West London football clubs
11 – Aly Heine, 1st year, Biomedical Sciences
Nobody knows what Aly looks like for 3 reasons: one, she’s longed off Emilia’s Varsity promo drive, two, she’s got commitment issues and keeps changing her hair colour and three, she’s just too bloody fast to get a good look at. Having played nearly every sport in the Universe when she was in Hong Kong, the team’s resident speed demon decided to pick up rugby in September and has scored try after try for the girls – including a magnificent hat trick against Essex.
Likes: winning, glitter, tequila
Dislikes: being forcibly removed from Loop
12 – Noemie Lévy, 2nd year, Biomedical Science – Captain
Noemie Lévy, how do I begin to explain Noemie Lévy? Noemie Lévy is flawless. I hear her right boot is insured for $10,000. I hear she played international rugby… in Hong Kong. Her favourite movie is Varsity Blues. One time she met Ma’a Nonu on a plane and he told her she was the best centre he’s ever met. One time she handed me off in the face… it was awesome.
Likes: spicy offloads, rugby 7s, running through at least 5 defenders
Dislikes: losing, tackling anywhere above the knee, unfortunate bruising
13 – Marta Arrizabalaga-Cascallana, 1st year, Biotechnology
Probably the closest thing the team have to a human freight train, Marta is an absolute machine at outside centre, running over anyone who tries to bring her down. The fierce Basque/Spaniard channels her dual nature by also being an absolute nightmare in the back line, whilst simultaneously being the sweet enough to make a dentist cry when she’s off the pitch.
Likes: running marathons, stripy socks, team fitness sessions
Dislikes: being told she’s concussed, playing flanker
14 – Anusha Leonard, 3rd year, Medicine
Anusha defected from RUMS Netball after she got tired of not being able to run with the ball – now she’s near unstoppable down the wing and will use any space she can get to score beautiful corner tries. A stunning support runner, Annie also uses her frankly terrifying pace to chase down every kick and smash any girl who’s brave (or stupid) enough to receive when she’s charging them down. Some would say she’s channelling her inner Simon Zebo but the girls reckon she’s already outclassed him.
Likes: Morrissey, chasing down the opposition, black coffee & cherry pie
Dislikes: non-contact sports, bands you’ve heard of
15 – Natalie Pendleton, 3rd year, Geophysics
Yet another former HK international, Nat has decided that with the introduction of new laws she would make the Sin Bin her new home – tarnishing her previous untainted record. When she isn’t destroying girls (it’s not her fault they’re all so short in comparison) with enormous hits, saving our skins by mashing potential try-scorers, or perfecting her offload skills she can be found in the library, despairing over the horrors of third year.
Likes: limbo contests, zesty memes, dump tackles
Dislikes: getting sin binned, tackling short people
16 – Anny Sha, 2nd year, Economics with East European Studies
The only thing Anny Sha loves more than rugby is stalking the Chinese currency exchange rates. A future trader, she’s honed her ruthless streak on the rugby pitch by hounding anyone with the ball and turning over ruck after ruck. One of the club’s true utility forwards, Anny has played everywhere in the scrum but is most happy in the front row where she can effectively psych out her competition.
Likes: the Financial Times, efficiency, stickers
Dislikes: allocative inefficiency, depreciation of the Yuan
17 – Eunice Pui, 2nd year, Mechanical Engineering
UCLUWRFC’s reserve hooker, Fox and Pui make for a dangerous replacement pairing as this new player also has a lightening quick strike and the ability to give sharp ball in the lineout. Whilst Eunice is capable of outshining everyone when she plays a full 80, this girl is even more worrying as a finisher where she’ll be smashing through an exhausted opposition come the 2nd half.
Likes: being the team’s unofficial photographer, impromptu trips to Singapore
Dislikes: scrum halves not feeding straight
18 – Ayomide Ukpong, 2nd year, Electrical Engineering
Off the pitch Ayo is an angel, acting as the club’s unofficial hype-woman, and probably the most optimistic person ever to have sprained their ankle mid-match. On the pitch, however, she’s a frighteningly strong ball carrier and it’s not unusual to see her with at least two girls hanging off either leg. One time it actually took five members of QMUL to bring her down.
Likes: foil blankets, betraying rugby for Gospel Soc events
Dislikes: opposition defenders,
19 – Jessica Knapman, 3rd year, Genetics
Jess is a reformed coxswain who got bored of yelling at giant men and has instead decided to yell at slightly less giant women. Perhaps more of a Shane Williams than a Jonah Lomu, Jess prefers to skip around defenders and turn on the gas to outrun anyone trying to stop her from scoring under the posts.
Likes: Jack Nowell, yelling at the TV during 6 Nations matches
Dislikes: Italian rucking techniques, being forced to play as a flanker
20 – Emilia Olsen, 2nd year, Art History and German
As opposed to Eva’s aggressive defensive style of play, Emilia instead prefers to exploit tiny gaps in defence and slip up through the centre of the pitch. With the ability to pass half the width of the pitch and a big fan of old-fashioned rucking, Emilia is one for KCL to keep their eyes on because she’s ready to exploit every mistake they make.
Likes: Danny Care’s last minute try against Scotland, oldschool jungle playlists
Dislikes: Thursday mornings, rude opposition 9s
21 – Brittany Blackburn, MA Education and Technology
In keeping with the club’s need for at least one token American every season, Brittany has gone above and beyond her station, channelling her frustration with the US political system into her performances on the wing. Having recently got revenge for a broken finger early in the season, Brit is now raring to go and score her maiden try against the Poly.
Likes: gluten-free ciders, stash, reminding people she used to row
Dislikes: post-match seminars, getting broken
22 – Sibylle Xatart, 1st year, Arts and Sciences
Rounding off the squad is the baby of the team, Sibylle. Despite only having turned 18 in January (and therefore only being able to play BUCS fixtures since then) she’s made an enormous impact and played every position in the back line. Originally a scrum half, Xatart has transferred the position’s natural organisational abilities into her role as an outside back and can often be found organising our defence from out wide on the wing.
Likes: Louis Picamoles, yelling at girls in French, being old enough to play
Dislikes: getting called “ninety-nine”, when the opposition understand what she’s saying