No Lough Lost in 37-5 thrashing by league leaders DUWRFC

Kelsi Butler, DUWRFC Club Captain reports on how her team made history and went top of the league for the first time

Durham University Women’s Rugby Club went top of the league after a 37-5 thrashing of Loughborough last Wednesday.

Five inches of snowfall early last week saw MC cancel the majority of its outdoor sports matches. However, determined and unperturbed, DUWRFC were all set to go head to head against one of Durham’s biggest sporting rivals boosted by three key players returning from injury and a cameo from DUNC’s, Meg Ellery.

Thanks go to the staff at Maiden Castle for clearing the snow for the game. This picture was taken the night before the game.

After a heavy preseason – Cameron Henderson style – and a loss away against Loughborough earlier in the season, the girls felt like they had something to prove and began by blitzing Loughborough’s defence early.. Despite her complete lack of rugby knowledge, Social sec, Kim Le Geyt, opened up scoring in the first ten minutes, quickly followed by her back three comrade, Ellery, who dodged touch to get one in the corner. DUWRFC were 10-0 up within twenty minutes.

Loughborough sought an immediate response but went further behind through a combination of luck and opportunism by the Durham forwards. After a quick turnover led to a classy break from the Loughborough centres with some quick play,only to be denied firstly by the Durham’s dream team back three combo and then by conceding an contentious penalty against Loughborough. Durham seized the opportunity and a solid attack from the forwards meant Durham could work their way back up the field with ease resulting a cheeky try from Alex Webster. DUWRFC’s worst dressed and captain, Lilian Knight, rounded up scoring in the first half, earning Durham the bonus point before the match was even half over. The first half ended 22-0.

Loughborough took advantage of an early slip in Durham’s concentration to register their only try of the game. Durham appeared to still be in the Christmas-giving mood when Anna Derrick made child’s play of the defending visitors, but after some harsh words and begging from Loughborough’s fullback, she very kindly dropped the ball over the line in sympathy…However, this did not last long as Durham won the scrum against the head and soon had 7 more points, soon followed by some more work from the forwards which created an easy try for Carolyn Wilson.

The game finished with Loughborough’s relentless attack held off by their own silly mistakes, letting Sophie Lee kick the ball to touch for the final time. Final score 37-5. Victory has never tasted so sweet on home soil; the win brought us top of the league table with three matches to play.

Durham Tab Awards:

Forward of the match: Sophie Yiannopoulou for her excellent performance, solid defence and intelligent attack;

Back of the match: Kim Le Geyt for tackling anything that came her way (or anyone attempting to score on the opposite side of the pitch, for that matter), despite them being 3x the size of her and her having just come back fit from a shoulder dislocation which saw her out of action for the last half of the season.

Woman of the match: Loughborough awarded (wo)man of the match to Anna Derrick, on her debut performance for DUWRFC after a conversion from football, for her consistent performance and ability to break through tackles in the midfield.

A dream debut for Anna Derick resulted in her receiving Woman of the Match.

Match Reaction:

Peter Warbiton, Dean of Experience at Durham University reports : “Pride of place goes to our women’s rugby. Durham has been known for years for its men’s rugby but it is safe to say that the women’s game really did come of age on Wednesday 16th January 2013. With all but one of the team back fit they took on the mighty Loughborough in freezing conditions. As always the Loughborough athletes were fit, skilful, strong and mobile but for once they were no match for the Palatinates as Durham dominated the set piece and were too strong outside as they cruised to a convincing win, Durham 37 Loughborough 5 to move to the top of the Premier League for the first time in our history.”

Durham’s big-hitting try scorer, Kim Le Guyt, blowing the fans a celebratory kiss.

Next up is the floodlit rival’s match against Newcastle – Wednesday 23rd January – kick off at 7pm on the rubber crumb. Please come down and support the girls