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Haverhill & District Women seeking new players as they plan to enter a new league

Haverhill & District Women were among the teams in the area delighted to be able to resume training this week – and they are coming back with a fresh drive to grow their player-base.

Coach Julian North started the town’s first women’s rugby team less than three years ago with just five initial players.

In 2018/19 they topped the Eastern Counties Women’s Merit League table with three victories from five games.

Haverhill & District Women following a pre-Covid match
Haverhill & District Women following a pre-Covid match

But with the target of competing in a fully fledged league season (merit leagues giving optional development fixtures) for the first time on the horizon, the team is keen to get new players involved.

Captain and team secretary Sian North, Julian’s daughter, said: “We have been training the whole way through the pandemic, outside lockdowns.

“Signed on we have 23 but available to play it is probably about 17 to 18.

“We really want to expand it. Recruitment is a massive thing for us as we are hoping to be in a league.”

The team, who like the men train and play at Castle Playing Fields, won three and lost five of their 2019/20 Women’s Merit League fixtures to end up second behind Southend Saints.

But North says that playing itself is only part of the appeal of getting involved.

“We want people not just to play the game but enjoy the social side of it too,” she said.

“We generally offer people the first couple of sessions to get people to come down and see if they enjoy it then you pay a membership to the club of £120 a year which includes everything.

“I played football from a young age. I went to one of the training sessions and got interested.

“Yes, it is a physical sport but it is not just the sport, you make lifelong friends.

“Rugby is a very accepting sport where everyone becomes a family and it is does not matter what ability you are.”

The team is currently putting on sessions on Wednesday evenings, Thursday evenings and Sunday mornings ahead of introducing some friendly fixtures later this month.

Anyone interested can contact team manager Bonnie Holmes on 07766 635485 or via their team Facebook page by searching ‘Haverhill & District RFC Women’.

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