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The Participation of American Women in Rugby

November 27, 2011 | Comments: 0 | Views: 155

In 1972, three all-female rugby teams represented three prestigious universities-Colorado State University, the University of Colorado at Boulder, and the University of Illinois at Champaign. When the pioneer members graduated, Colorado rugby training schools soon sprouted in major cities and urban areas in the state. In 1978, the first ever Women's National Rugby Championships was hosted by the Women's Rugby Club in Chicago. Prior to this event, the United States of America Rugby Football Union (USARFU) was formed to promulgate playing regulations and protect players' rights.

An all-female, all-star national rugby team was formed in 1985. Dubbed Wivern, the team toured in England and France and went undefeated. Perhaps unsurprisingly, many of these players went on to participate in the 1991 World Cup. The USA Women's National Team was formed in 1987 and was called the Women Eagles. Ironically, Women Eagles players were not allowed to wear the Eagle logo during their first bout with the Canadian Women's National Team.

As a sign of good sportsmanship, the Women Eagles faced their Canadian counterparts for the next ten years. Their yearly tourney was dubbed the CanAm series. The Women Eagles remained undefeated during the entire length of the series. In 1990, the Women Eagles changed its name to USAPresidents 15 and went to New Zealand to compete in the Women's World Rugby Festival. During this time, the US national team garnered 3 wins and 1 loss. Most Colorado rugby clubs would recall that this was their very first loss since they started representing the US in 1985.

The year 1991 marked a historic point in rugby in the US. Jaime Jordan was elected Treasurer for the Board of Directors of the USARFU in 1991. The Women's National Team also won the first Women's Rugby World Cup in Cardiff, Wales. They defeated the New Zealand national team and proceeded to the finals where they battled the formidable English team.

In 1996, the national team changed its name once more. Now dubbed Atlantis, the team was formed by some of the best female rugby players at the time. Emil Signes, one of the best rugby coaches of all time, handpicked these players from existing rugby teams across the country. The Women's National 7s team won their first International 7s tournament in Hong Kong.

Such is the colorful history of women's rugby in the US. For more information on important dates and other details, one could always visit the local library or sports historian. Better yet, one could pay a visit to the nearest rugby training facility where Colorado rugby teams practice.

For more details, search "Colorado rugby" in Google for related information.

Source: EzineArticles
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