Rugby Women Warm Up For Varsity

UCL vs KCL 15-5: UCL defend their pride on the pitch in the LUSL League on Sunday

Given 180 years of intense rivalry, this game was always going to be an emotional one. The tension between the two teams could be felt a mile off and both teams were desperate for a win to retain their pride and dignity.

Both teams got off to a strong start, fighting to get the first try whilst keeping hold of the ball and staying defensively solid. However, the nerves set in and many handling errors were made in the first five minutes resulting in numerous scrums.

Despite this, UCL made several phases of attack, constantly pushing King’s back to their try line. Panic was soon plastered onto the King’s girls’ faces as Eleanor tore through KCL’s defence, crashing over the try line to score from a tap penalty 10 minutes into the game, giving UCL a 5-0 lead.

The UCL defence remained strong and King’s attempts at penetrating them were unsuccessful on many attempts. The backs worked extremely hard making great runs and interchanges throughout but did not manage to score. It was also clear that King’s were getting tired and some of their players turned a brighter red than the colour of their luminous shirts. As a result, King’s started making numerous high tackles and centre Alice became their target on many occasions.

Half-time came allowing King’s to re-think their tactics and to recuperate from an intense first-half. Moreover, one of the highlights was watching a very energetic Lucy with her star-jumps as entertainment during half-time lifting some spirits.

King’s came back after half-time with a new passion re-ignited in their eyes. They started well but once again, the robustness of UCL’s defence proved to be far too good for them. Great tackles were made from Faith, Michelle and Doris. In particular, Faith managed to spear KCL’s ‘tank’ to the floor which was a massive achievement in itself.

KCL continued with their high tackles and were eventually punished with one of their players being sin binned. After some excellent play from the backs, Tonje did a ‘Usain Bolt’, whizzing past KCL’s defence on a long break-away scoring in the corner giving UCL a further lead making the score 10-0.

With approximately 20 minutes to go, King’s buckled down and turned up the pressure with one of their front rows rumbling over the line to score a try. At the same time, captain Jess took an injury but she pulled through and continued to play, determined to secure a sweet victory for UC.

At this point, both teams were still in the danger zone: King’s needed a try to get back into the game and UCL needed a try to finish it off. UCL rose to the pressure and attacked with some skilful runs from the centres and excellent defence on the wings. UCL were given a penalty due to yet another high tackle by King’s which was taken quickly by Jess. An easy 2-on-1 pass to Tonje who once again ripped apart KCL’s defence scored again in the left hand corner making it an electrifying finish.

The final whistle blew, to KCL’s relief, making the final score 15- 5 to UCL. Well done to Jess for being named man of the match, Vicky for getting Back and Faith for being named Forward. This was a great practice game in preparation to varsity later on in the season. Bring on Varsity!